Last year, Microsoft president Brad Smith discussed the company's ambition to spearhead a so-called digital Geneva Convention. Essentially, the initiative would be international standards to prevent state-led cyberattacks. Over the weekend, Microsoft finally finalized its plans as the Digital Peace Now campaign.
Microsoft took to the stage at the seventh Global Citizen Festival in New York to debut the Digital Peace Now project. The new campaign is accompanied by a website. This online portal has a petition that can be signed by visitors who want to show support for the initiative.
“Right now, we all have an opportunity to stop future assaults on our digital world but our world leaders need a wakeup call — and that starts with you,” said Jamal Edwards, Microsoft's Global Advocate for Digital Peace, during his speech on the Global Citizen stage.
“[Digital Peace Now] is about stopping cyberwarfare and telling our world leaders to take real policy action — before it's too late,” Edwards said.
Redmond says the campaign will push for countries to agree to limit state-sponsored cyberattacks on other nations. As technology develops, nations will have the power to do massive damage to each other. The Digital Peace Now movement would see countries adopt a set of global rules for the creation and use of “digital weapons”.
Furthermore, the company detailed an independent organization that will work internationally across private and public sectors. A regulator of sorts, the organization will investigate and punish nations found to be violating the agreement.
While the project seems utopic, Microsoft believes public support can pressure nations into joining. The company believes legislation is needed to govern digital weapons with regulations.