The Impact of Cybersecurity on Trade


Researcher Offers U.S. Policy Case Examples

National policies regarding cybersecurity can have a positive or negative effect on global trade efforts, says Allan Friedman, research director of the Brookings Institution’s Center for Technology Innovation.

Take, for example, a congressional report from 2012, which recommends that government systems, particularly sensitive IT systems, refrain from using equipment and component parts manufactured by two Chinese companies, Huawei and ZTE, the world’s largest and fifth-largest telecom equipment makers, respectively (see House Panel: 2 Chinese Firms Pose IT Security Risks).

“To name-check a country of origin … is actually a pretty egregious thing to do in international trade, in diplomatic circles, because it really does invite other countries to retaliate in time,” Friedman says in an interview with Information Security Media Group (see transcript below).

Friedman recently wrote a paper, Cybersecurity and Trade: National Policies, Global and Local Consequences, which addresses the intersection of two of the largest dynamics shaping the cyberworld today – the connectivity arising from global trade and data networks and the risk introduced by that connectivity.

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