Faculty in the News: Eric Jensen

June 11, 2015

BYU Law Professor Eric Jensen is part of the international team drafting the latest version of the “Tallinn Manual,” a guidebook as to how the law of war applies to cyberspace. He is quoted in a Voice of America article titled, “China, Espionage and the Law of Cyberwar.” “My belief is that it’s very unlikely that we’ll have a cyberwar that only includes cyber means,” Jensen said. “What’s most likely going to happen is that we’ll have normal war and cyber aspects to that, and we’ve seen that. Between Russia and Ukraine, Russia and Georgia, the U.S. and Iraq – basically every armed conflict between advanced nations we’ve seen since the mid-’90s has included cyber.” Jensen provides additional comments on how the law is silent when it comes to espionage: “True espionage is by definition not illegal under international law, although every nation in the world says it’s illegal as a matter of domestic law,”  Jensen said. “Espionage by definition is gathering information. That’s never been an act of war. Now if that espionage transitions to acts of sabotage, if it creates effects of significant impact and duration, that might be an act of war, but just espionage, no.” Read the full article here.