Podcasts

Steptoe Cyberlaw Podcast: Introducing the Herman Kahn of Cyberspace

By Stewart Baker
Tuesday, January 24, 2017, 1:19 PM

Our guest interview is with Shattuck Professor of Law at Harvard and co-founder of Lawfare.  We explore his contrarian view of how to deal with Russian hacking, which leads to me praising (or defaming, take your pick) him as a Herman Kahn for cyberconflict. Except what’s unthinkable in this case are his ideas for negotiating, not fighting, with the Russians.

In the news roundup, I ask Michael Vatis whether the wheels are coming off the as yet another company refuses to succumb to the commission’s genteel extortion. 

The Obama Administration came to an end last week, —and why we won’t. A basically sympathetic review of the administration’s cyber policies ends with a harsh judgment on President Obama: “He did almost everything right and it still turned out wrong.”

Among the leftovers served up last week:  that seems unlikely to prove relevant in the new administration, a on the commission’s cybersecurity initiatives, and a zombie notice that showed up in the Federal Register three days into the Trump administration, implementing the Umbrella Agreement on data protection with the EU. Maury Shenk evaluates the agreement and its prospects.

And just to make sure we haven’t forgotten the new team’s rather different approach, it on how good its cyber policy will be. It reads, in its entirety, “Cyberwarfare is an emerging battlefield, and we must take every measure to safeguard our national security secrets and systems. We will make it a priority to develop defensive and offensive cyber capabilities at our U.S. Cyber Command, and recruit the best and brightest Americans to serve in this crucial area.”

I try a quick explanation of the flap between security researchers and the Guardian over an . Somehow, the Iran-Iraq war makes an appearance.

And, in a first for the Steptoe Cyberlaw Podcast, Alan Cohn reports as our roving foreign correspondent from, where else, Davos. Want to know what the global 1% are worried about—other than you? Alan has the answers.

As always, the Cyberlaw Podcast welcomes feedback.  Send an email to  or leave a message at +1 202 862 5785.

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The views expressed in this podcast are those of the speakers and do not reflect the opinions of the firm.