Land, sea, air and the cloud: the fourth border type

Starkey, Victoria (2023-01)

The border management of states is tasked with preserving the security of the state at its entry and exit points. Until recently, threats were mainly of physical nature, thus the state border was guarded at physical border crossing points over land, by sea, or from the air. However, the growth of cyberspace and criminal opportunity it brings to creating virtual external threats has shaken the security model. This thesis aims to present how and why cybersecurity should be merged with pre-existing border management structures within states in order to create a holistic security approach for its external borders; both physical and virtual. This requires the advent of a fourth border type and its safeguarding measures, which I refer to as the cloud. The intersection of border management and cybersecurity already exists in many areas but has been largely unexamined as of yet, and where differences exist, such as private sector interest and state regulation, cybersecurity can draw from the institutional memory of the ancient border management sector as a strength. With the rising instability across Europe, hybrid threats are becoming inextricably intertwined with state security and therefore must be countered with a hybrid border approach, which is to say, safeguarding of the cloud border using border management strategy.