Strauss Center News

Updates from the Strauss Center and our affiliated distinguished scholars and fellows


Schmitt Discusses the Tallinn Manual’s Update in WaPo

Jul 9, 2021 |

recent Washington Post article highlighted Professor Schmitt’s work in updating the Tallinn Manual on the International Law Applicable to Cyber Operations. Michael Schmitt is a Professor of Public International Law at Reading Law School (UK), the Francis Lieber Distinguished Scholar at the Lieber Institute of the United States Military Academy at West Point, Visiting Professor at the University of Texas Law School, and Strauss Center Distinguished Scholar. He is directing a five year international effort currently working to update the manual in order to set boundaries that help “reduce the chances of escalating and destabilizing hacking contests.” Commenting on the geopolitical conditions that are driving the manual’s revision, Professor Schmitt noted that some countries, like Russia, often operate in a “gray zone” by testing the global norms on hacking without outright violating widely established rules. Professor Schmitt believes that better articulating legal boundaries and delineating consequences for malicious behavior could “result in less aggressive Russian hacking.” He also expressed his confidence in the ability of international law to address cyber issues, noting that he has not yet seen countries that simply flout international law. Read the full article here.