Hot Off the Presses

| Spring 2017

A Sampling of Recent Books by Belfer Center Faculty and Fellows

The Cybersecurity Dilemma: Hacking, Trust, and Fear Between Nations

By Ben Buchanan, Postdoctoral Fellow, Cyber Security Project

Oxford University Press (January 2017)

Why do nations break into one another’s most important computer networks? This book draws on often-overlooked documents leaked by Edward Snowden, real-world case studies of cyber operations, and policymaker perspectives to show that intruding into other countries’ networks has enormous defensive value as well. This general problem, in which a nation’s means of securing itself threatens the security of others and risks escalating tension, is a bedrock concept in international relations called the “security dilemma.” This book shows not only that the security dilemma applies to cyber operations, but also that the particular characteristics of the digital domain mean that the effects are deeply pronounced. The cybersecurity dilemma is both a vital concern of modern statecraft and a means of accessibly understanding the essential components of cyber operations.

“Buchanan cuts to the core of the issues and offers well-grounded ideas for how to reduce the looming danger of great but potentially avoidable conflict.”

Robert Jervis, Columbia University

North Korea’s Hidden Revolution: How the Information Underground Is Transforming a Closed Society

By Jieun Baek, Former Research Fellow, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs

Yale University Press (November 2016)

One of the least understood countries in the world, North Korea has long been known for its repressive regime. Yet it is far from being an impenetrable black box. Media flows covertly into the country, and fault lines are appearing in the government’s sealed informational borders. Drawing on deeply personal interviews with North Korean defectors from all walks of life, ranging from propaganda artists to diplomats, Jieun Baek tells the story of North Korea’s information underground—the network of citizens who take extraordinary risks by circulating illicit content such as foreign films, television shows, soap operas, books, and encyclopedias. By fostering an awareness of life outside North Korea and enhancing cultural knowledge, the materials these citizens disseminate are affecting the social and political consciousness of a people.

“This insightful, well-written and disturbing book adds depth and texture to what we think life inside North Korea must be like.”

Amb.Robert Gallucci

Cyber Insecurity: Navigating the Perils of the Next Information Age

Edited by Richard Harrison and Trey Herr, Postdoctoral Fellow, Cyber Security Project

Rowman & Littlefield Publishers (October 2016)

Growing dependence on cyberspace for commerce, communication, governance, and military operations has left society vulnerable to a multitude of security threats. Mitigating the inherent risks associated with the use of cyberspace poses a series of thorny public policy problems. In this volume, academics, practitioners from both private sector and government, along with former service members come together to highlight sixteen of the most pressing contemporary challenges in cybersecurity, and to offer recommendations for the future.

“Cyber Insecurity identifies the risks and threats to the system upon which we become more dependent every day and the means to overcome them.”

Tom Ridge, First Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security

Insider Threats

Edited by Matthew Bunn, Professor of Practice, Harvard Kennedy School  and Scott D. Sagan, Former International Security Program Research Fellow

Cornell University Press (January 2017)

High-security organizations around the world face devastating threats from insiders—trusted employees with access to sensitive information, facilities, and materials. From Edward Snowden to the Fort Hood shooter to the theft of nuclear materials, the threat from insiders is on the front page and at the top of the policy agenda. Insider Threats offers detailed case studies of insider disasters across a range of different types of institutions, from biological research laboratories, to nuclear power plants, to the U.S. Army. Matthew Bunn and Scott D. Sagan outline cognitive and organizational biases that lead organizations to downplay the insider threat, and they synthesize “worst practices” from these past mistakes, offering lessons that will be valuable for any organization with high security and a lot to lose.

 “This compendium of research on insider threats is essential reading for all personnel with accountabilities for security....”

Roger Howsley, Executive Director, World Institute for Nuclear Security

For more information on this publication: Belfer Communications Office
For Academic Citation:

Lynch, Susan (ed.), "Hot Off the Presses." Belfer Center Newsletter. Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard Kennedy School. (Spring 2017).