AUTHOR ARCHIVES

Patrick Lin

Patrick Lin, Ph.D., is the director of the Ethics + Emerging Sciences Group at California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo, where he is an associate philosophy professor.
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On the Cyber Frontier, Hacking Back is Ethical — and Even Desirable

September 26, 2016 When cyberattacks come from abroad, there’s special panic. We often imagine them to be the opening volleys of a cyberwar that could escalate into a kinetic war. For that reason, hacking back—or cyber-counterattacking—is presumed to be too dangerous to allow. The legal case against hacking back is that the use...

Do Killer Robots Violate Human Rights?

April 20, 2015 As bizarre as it sounds, the United Nations just held an arms-control conference to figure out if killer robots might violate the laws of war. Ten years ago, very few experts were worried about military robots. The technology was just emerging onto the battlefield. Now, several credible groups are waging...

Do Killer Robots Violate Human Rights?

April 20, 2015 FROM NEXTGOV arrow As bizarre as it sounds, the United Nations just held an arms-control conference to figure out if killer robots might violate the laws of war. Ten years ago, very few experts were worried about military robots. The technology was just emerging onto the battlefield. Now, several credible groups are waging...

Pain Rays and Robot Swarms: The Radical New War Games DoD Plays

April 16, 2013 FROM NEXTGOV arrow In the year 2025, a rogue state--long suspected of developing biological weapons--now seems intent on using them against U.S. allies and interests. Anticipating such an event, we have developed a secret "counter-virus" that could infect and destroy their stockpile of bioweapons. Should we use it? From a legal standpoint, it...

Could human enhancement turn soldiers into weapons that violate international law?

January 7, 2013 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Science fiction, or actual U.S. military project? Half a world away from the battlefield, a soldier controls his avatar-robot that does the actual fighting on the ground. Another one wears a sticky fabric that enables her to climb a wall like a gecko or spider would. Returning from a traumatic...

Is it possible to wage a just cyberwar?

June 5, 2012 FROM NEXTGOV arrow In the last week or so, cyberwarfare has made front-page news: the United States may have been behind the Stuxnet cyberattack on Iran; Iran may have suffered another digital attack with the Flame virus; and our military and industrial computer chips may or may not be compromised by backdoor switches...

'Stand your cyberground' law: A novel proposal for digital security

May 1, 2012 FROM NEXTGOV arrow With the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (CISPA), we're in a political tug-of-war over who should lead the security of our digital borders: should it be a civilian organization such as the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), or a military organization such as the Department of Defense (DoD)? I...

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