Action line C-10: Ethical and Legal Implications of Darknet


Session 257

14:30–16:15, Monday, 12 June 2017 Popov Room 1, ITU Tower Interpretation: E/F Interactive Action Line Facilitation Meeting

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Action line C-10: Ethical dimensions of the Information Society

The darknet refers overlay network that can be accessed only with specific software (e.g. P2P networks and Tor Browser as opposed to www which is ClearNet or standard internet), configurations, or authorization, often using non-standard communications protocols and ports that is difficult for authorities or non-state actors to monitor. This is usually achieved through encryption or by layering networks.

Darknets in general may be used for various reasons, such as:Computer crime (hacking, file corruption etc.); Protecting dissidents from political reprisal; File sharing (warez, personal files, pornography, confidential files, illegal or counterfeit software etc.); To better protect the privacy rights of citizens from targeted and mass surveillance; Sale of restricted goods on darknet markets; Whistleblowing and news leaks

Darknet is used by terrorist group for youth radicalization leading violent extremism, terrorist recruitment and communication.Jeffrey Feltman, the UN under-secretary-general for political affairs reported that that IS was adapting in several ways to military pressure by resorting to increasingly covert communication and recruitment methods, including by using the “dark web,” encryption and messengers.

The session will address some of the legal and ethical challenges of the Darknet.

  • Can you legally manage and block fallout of darknet within the existing legal and policy regime?
  • What are ethical implications of the Darknet?


Dr Hara Padhy, UNESCO


  • Mr. Dan Shefet, Lawyer, Cabinet Shefet, Denmark
  • Mr. Pavan Duggal,, India
  • Dr. Rayna Stamboliyska, Désidédata and RS Strategy, France

Session's link to WSIS Action Lines

  • AL C1 logo C1. The role of public governance authorities and all stakeholders in the promotion of ICTs for development
  • AL C5 logo C5. Building confidence and security in the use of ICTs
  • AL C10 logo C10. Ethical dimensions of the Information Society

Session's link to Sustainable Development Process

  • Goal 16: Peace, justice and strong institutions logo Goal 16: Promote just, peaceful and inclusive societies


Link to this session
Facebook Use of internet for terrorist purposes (UNODC)