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Joint Statement on the Third Estonia-U.S. Cyber Dialogue

22. June 2019 - 15:33

The following statement was released by the Government of the Republic of Estonia and the United States of America.

Cybersecurity policymakers from Estonia and the United States convened for their third bilateral cybersecurity consultation in Tallinn, June 7, 2019, to affirm their commitment to promoting rules-based international order and stability in cyberspace. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Estonia and the U.S. Department of State co-chaired the consultation, which included participation from the Estonian Ministries of Interior, Economics, Defense, and Justice and the Estonian Information Systems Authority, as well as the U.S. Departments of Homeland Security, Justice and Defense.

Estonia and United States affirmed their shared vision of a secure and open cyberspace and commitment to continued collaborative efforts in international security, cyber resilience and critical infrastructure protection, combatting cybercrime, and promoting Internet freedom and the multi-stakeholder approach to Internet governance.  

Estonia and the United States envision a stable, global cyberspace, one in which all countries behave responsibly in cyberspace and are held accountable for their malicious cyber activity. This vision is based on a cyber stability framework that is built on the applicability of existing international law to cyberspace, promotes adherence to certain voluntary, nonbinding norms of responsible State behavior in cyberspace in peacetime, and includes the development and implementation of cyber confidence building measures to reduce the risk of conflict and escalation in cyberspace.

This framework is reflected in the consensus-based reports of the UN Group of Governmental Experts on Developments in the Field of Information and Telecommunications Security in the Context of International Security (UNGGE). Estonia and the United States are pleased to be members of the 2019 UNGGE that will take this work forward, including further elaboration on how international law applies to State conduct in cyberspace.  Both Estonia and the United States will also productively participate in the UN Open Ended Working Group (OEWG) on cyber-related issues to build on this consensus. 

States that value stability should cooperatively respond to cyber incidents and work together to champion such efforts. As such, Estonia will work closely with the United States in the framework of international Cyber Deterrence Initiative; both Estonia and the United States also commit to work with other partners to deter, attribute and respond to malicious cyber behavior, including developing and swiftly imposing consequences against malign actors that cause destructive, disruptive, or otherwise destabilizing cyber incidents.

Estonia and the United States remain committed to their existing bilateral cyber cooperation and seek deeper collaboration across agencies to combat cybercrime, to increase the numbers of states parties to the Budapest Cybercrime Convention, further cyber defense, and build greater cyber resilience, as well as to exchange best practices and share information on emerging threats.  Both countries prioritize cyber capacity building in developing and transition countries and look forward to coordination and cooperation opportunities. 

Estonia and the United States actively engage in efforts to further promote internet freedom and the ability to exercise human rights online.  As members of the Freedom Online Coalition, both commit to promote the same basic principle: the same rights that individuals have offline, must also be protected online. Both are also strong supporters of the multi-stakeholder approach to Internet governance, including the bottom-up, stakeholder participation on equal footing, and non-negotiating character of the Internet Governance Forum (IGF).

Estonia and the United States seek to leverage opportunities for deepening bilateral cooperation across cyber issues and collaborative efforts in various regional and multilateral venues toward achieving these common objectives in cyberspace.

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