Summary of Cyber War Will Not Take Place

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Cyber War Will Not Take Place book summary
No one has been killed in cyberwar; in fact, cyberweapons could actually reduce violence.


8 Overall

9 Importance

9 Innovation

7 Style


Thomas Rid’s book is rich in analysis and detail. He draws on a range of thinkers, including Thomas Hobbes and Prussian military philosopher, Carl von Clausewitz, to illustrate his thesis that “cyberwar” distracts attention from how nations should debate and address cyberattacks. He delves into the implications of how Internet-based capabilities affect violence, sabotage and espionage. Rid’s book is compelling, though at times the wealth of detail distracts the reader from his central argument. getAbstract recommends Rid’s insights to policy makers in the public and private sectors and to those interested in the security challenges wrought by the Internet.

In this summary, you will learn

  • How to cut through the hype surrounding cyberwar,
  • How cyberattacks affect sabotage and espionage, and
  • What governments should be doing instead of focusing on taking the offensive in cyberattacks.


Losing Control
Some effects of cyberattacks may be more benign – or, at least, not as violent – as popular conceptions would suggest. For instance, an enemy might render an air defense system harmless through a cyberattack instead of a bombing. Though Prussian military strategist Carl...
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About the Author

Thomas Rid, a reader in war studies at King’s College London, writes extensively on security questions.

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