On May 24, 2019, the United States hosted the European Union for the sixth U.S.-EU Cyber Dialogue in Washington, DC. Robert Strayer, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Cyber and International Communications Information Policy, U.S. Department of State, and Rory Domm, Acting Head of Division for Security and Defence Policy, European External Action Service, co-chaired the dialogue. U.S. Departments of Justice, Homeland Security and Commerce, and European Commission DG for Communications Networks, Content and Technology and DG Migration and Home Affairs joined the U.S.-EU Cyber Dialogue. A number of EU Member States took part as observers.
The United States and the European Union reaffirmed their commitment to a global, open, stable and secure cyberspace where the rule of law is fully respected, where the same rights that individuals have offline are also protected online, and where the security, economic growth, prosperity, and integrity of free and democratic societies is promoted and preserved.
The United States and the European Union provided updates on their respective cyber strategies, policies, and legislation, including implementation of the U.S. National Cyber Strategy and the EU Joint Communication on “Resilience, Deterrence and Defence: Building Strong Cybersecurity for the EU”. The discussions addressed coordination and cooperation toward bolstering cyber resilience, combatting cybercrime, preserving multi-stakeholder Internet governance, ensuring international cyber stability and security, furthering cyber diplomacy and deterrence, and building cyber capacity. Both sides welcomed continued progress on increasing global capabilities to better prevent, protect against, detect, deter, and respond to malicious cyber activities and underlined the need for coordination and cooperation in order to safeguard a global, open, stable, and secure cyberspace.
The United States and the European Union reaffirmed the importance of the Budapest Convention as a basis for national legislation and international cooperation in fighting cybercrime. They welcomed the increasing number of states acceding to the convention and affirmed that no new legal instrument was necessary for addressing global cybercrime or global cyber issues. They exchanged information on their respective capacity building efforts to advance global capacities to tackle cybercrime and increase cyber resilience.
The United States and European Union are looking forward to the new UN Group of Governmental Experts (GGE) pursuant to the U.S.-drafted resolution on Advancing Responsible State Behaviour in the Context of International Security and the upcoming UN Open Ended Working Group on cyber-related issues and believe that both processes should build upon the landmark 2013 and 2015 consensus reports, including addressing how existing international law applies to state behavior in cyberspace. The U.S. and EU delegations pledged to engage constructively in increasing the international community’s awareness, adherence to and implementation of the recommendations contained in the existing consensus GGE reports regarding the applicability of international law to cyberspace, and non-binding norms of responsible behavior by States in cyberspace during peacetime, to which all UN Member States have previously and repeatedly committed.
In addition, both sides welcomed important progress on the development and implementation of cyber confidence building measures (CBMs) to reduce misperceptions and the risk of escalation stemming from the use of information and communications technologies. The U.S. and EU delegations noted the importance of the ongoing implementation of the CBMs committed to in the Organization for Security Cooperation in Europe and welcomed the adoption of cyber CBMs by the Organization for American States and the ASEAN Regional Forum.
In order to keep cyberspace stable and secure, the United States and the European Union are committed to working together and with others to hold States accountable for actions that are contrary to the international consensus on responsible state behavior in cyberspace. In that regard they firmly condemn the malicious cyber activities that have taken place in recent years and affirm the need to strengthen cooperation through both continued dialogue and practical efforts to coordinate and cooperate in their respective efforts to prevent, detect, deter, and respond to malicious cyber activities.
The European Union will host the next U.S.-EU cyber dialogue in Brussels in 2020.