Coordinating Across Chaos: The Practice of Transnational Internet Security Collaboration
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This dissertation explores transnational security provisioning on/for the internet. A unique framework of analysis is established that melds traditional understandings of security drawn from computing disciplines with levels of analysis from international relations (IR) theory. This helps bridge the gap between IR security literature that often places the State at the center of analysis with the system of distributed agency often called a “patchwork” that underlies security provisioning on/for the Internet. This results in the Information Centered IR Security Model (ICIRS pronounced Icarus). The recognition and remediation of large-scale issues on/for the Internet is shown to be a form of social practice which has instantiated a community of practice. Data across cases of malware recognition and remediation are used to establish a historical context for the provisioning of security on/for the Internet and to analyze the modern provisioning context. It is concluded that an information security community of practice has arisen as consequence of the Internet’s early structure while evolving through various important security events. That community is embedded within the functional structure of the Internet and, through the maintenance of professional social relations, individuals within the community can act both as sensors to recognize emerging threats and as agents to remediate such threats thus wielding an important dimension of power in a connected world.