International Cyber Strategy for Norway

Strategies and Action Plans

The International Cyber Strategy for Norway from 2017 presents a comprehensive framework addressing the various aspects of cyberspace and its implications for national security, economic growth, and international cooperation. Here are the key elements of the strategy, along with an analysis of its approach:

Governing Principles

The strategy outlines four governing principles that Norway aims to balance:

  1. Openness: Advocates for the internet’s interoperability, open access, and consensus-based international standards to foster innovation and creativity.
  2. Security: Emphasises the need to protect digital networks to maintain public, business, and individual confidence.
  3. Robustness: Stresses the importance of stable and confident digital networks, clarifying responsibilities between authorities and the private sector.
  4. Freedom: Ensures that democratic values and individual rights, such as freedom of expression and privacy, are upheld in cyberspace.

Strategic Priorities

  1. Cybersecurity: Norway aims to promote secure, stable, and robust digital networks through international cooperation, capacity-building, and the development of international standards. This includes:
    • Participating in forums such as the EU, UN, OECD, and OSCE.
    • Building global understanding and cooperation to handle cyberspace incidents.
    • Promoting a common European basic security level and strengthening cooperation with the EU.
  2. Innovation and the Economy: The strategy focuses on promoting digital innovation, protecting intellectual property, and supporting the digital economy by:
    • Ensuring global openness of the internet.
    • Facilitating digital innovation within the EEA.
    • Protecting intellectual property and promoting Norwegian research globally.
  3. Crime Prevention: The strategy includes measures to combat cybercrime and other serious crimes committed through cyberspace by:
    • Developing standards, conventions, and measures to combat cybercrime.
    • Strengthening international police cooperation.
    • Combating online radicalization and recruitment.
  4. Security Policy: Norway’s approach includes national and international measures to protect against digital threats, focusing on:
    • Developing strong national safeguards.
    • Enhancing digital-attack defense capabilities in cooperation with allies.
    • Clarifying the application of international law in cyberspace.
  5. Global Internet Governance: The strategy promotes efficient, stable, and inclusive structures for internet governance by:
    • Supporting a robust and open internet platform.
    • Advocating for role clarification and good management principles.
    • Avoiding unnecessary governmental intervention.
  6. Development: Norway aims to support capacity-building in developing countries to leverage cyberspace for growth and security, aligning with the UN’s sustainable development goals. This includes:
    • Promoting cybersecurity capacity-building.
    • Supporting robust infrastructure and security as part of the sustainable development agenda.
    • Enabling developing countries to exploit internet opportunities for economic and social development.
  7. Online Freedom: The strategy emphasises the protection of human rights in cyberspace by:
    • Supporting freedom of expression.
    • Promoting secure communication solutions for vulnerable groups.
    • Ensuring access to a free and secure internet.
    • Building a global understanding of the importance of privacy.

Norway’s international cyber strategy is holistic and forward-looking, recognising the multifaceted nature of cyberspace and its impact on national security, economic development, and human rights. The strategy:

  • Balances Security and Openness: Strikes a balance between maintaining security and promoting openness and innovation in cyberspace.
  • Emphasises International Cooperation: Recognises that cybersecurity and internet governance require international collaboration, reflecting Norway’s commitment to multilateralism.
  • Focuses on Capacity-Building: Prioritises capacity-building in developing countries, aligning with global development goals and promoting equitable access to cyberspace benefits.
  • Protects Human Rights: Ensures that human rights are respected and protected in cyberspace, reinforcing Norway’s commitment to democratic values.