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American-Chinese cyberwarfare agreement is a valid first step to nowhere

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The attempts by the United States and China to forge the first ever cyberwarfare treaty is two things, neither of which are what they are telling the general public. On the surface and for the news, this is a great first step towards safety and security online and a representation of improved relationships between the two superpowers.

The reality is that it’s neither a step towards safety nor does it represent better foreign relations. This is a deal that is setting the ground rules for how each country will circumvent each other’s cybersecurity measures.

Neither country has any intentions of slowing down their cyberwarfare expansion, especially when it comes to addressing one another. This is for the front facing side of politics. Behind the scenes, they have already been setting up proxies and rogue accounts that allow for enough space to keep both sides from having to acknowledge their nefarious actions.

This isn’t conspiracy theory. If you look at the way that each side is wording it, everything is clearly pointing to the idea that they will not virtually annihilate each other. That’s pretty much it. Neither will strike the first blow in practice, but in reality neither wants to get caught striking a blow at all. Both sides have already been in a cyberwar with each other for several years.

This is a symbolic deal, one that has no chance of being truly effective. In essence, they’re both declaring that if one gets caught, the other has the right to strike back. This is the start of the cyber cold war.

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