Contributed by Winthrop Smith, Milford, Connecticut, 3L Roger Williams University Law School

State-sponsored hacking occurs when a country funds cyber hacking organizations or groups in order to infiltrate a company’s or government’s cyber system for the sole purpose of stealing personal/sensitive information in the hope of turning a profit, gaining intelligence, or destroying mainframes. Since the first cyber attack in 1988, cyber hacking as become quite ubiquitous. Cyber hacking, once an avenue of personal exploitation, has become a militarized option which is on the forefront of every World Power’s mind. Cyber attacks worldwide cause billions of dollars in losses to companies and governments every year. State sponsored hacking is also an effective method for a nation to effectuate an attack on a rival nation without having to shoulder the blame since cyber attacks are relatively anonymous.

I have termed this international phenomenon, World War C: Cyber Warfare. In order for the United States to avoid being inundated with successful cyber attacks, our cyber strategy must be threefold: develop technological advancements, factor in costs for cybersecurity into the national budget, and establish a cyber response team of white hat hackers through recruitment. Technological advancements are of paramount importance because the older a cyber system gets, the more vulnerable it becomes. Budgeting is important because each branch of the military has now established a wing of cybersecurity that requires financing and continued growth. Recruitment is necessary, because in order to train white hat hackers for a good cause, time and resources are required and should begin during adolescence.

From the first attack in 1988 to the Sony hack in 2014, cyber hacking has been growing at an alarming rate. These principals which are evidenced in my extensive research paper outline a necessary response to the international problem of state-sponsored hacking. Cyber hacking has been, and will continue to be, one of the most pressing issues of the computer age.