A cyber letter of marque would allow a privateer to seek these illicit funds wherever they may be hidden and either seize them or digitally sequester them for further law enforcement action.
The idea of using a letter of marque to effect an economic result is not novel.
As for the cyber profiteer, the prospect of sharing a large percentage of the trillions of dollars, not to mention the potential for criminal or tort liability, (125) would ensure strict compliance with the terms of the letter of marque. As the privateer in the 1700s and 1800s provided both a much needed governmental funding stream (126) and served a valid national security function, so too would a modern cyber privateer by removing illicit funds from the hands of organized crime and sanction violators.
A cyber letter of marque would vest responsible and vetted entities with authority to digitally seize illicit funds while providing legal protections from criminal and/or civil liability.
government claims that "[a]ll options are on the table" with regard to responses to these attacks, (145) the one option that has not been discussed is a cyber letter of marque. The current law, and seemingly political position, is basically forcing U.S.
(150) However, if the United States authorized tightly controlled offensive cyber capabilities via a congressionally authorized cyber letter of marque, the nation could allow a U.S.
A cyber letter of marque could also be utilized as a method of bounty hunting, providing information to law enforcement agencies necessary to apprehend a cyber attacker.
Bounty hunting, like a letter of marque, is an activity intertwined with the history of the United States.
The only difference between the reward/bounty programs currently operated by the United States Government and a cyber letter of marque is the antiquated CFAA prohibition.
DeWitte, writing in the Indiana Law Journal, discussed one of the potential downfalls between physical, as opposed to virtual, bounty hunting through the use of a letter of marque. In particular, he illuminated the legitimate concern that "state authorities could conceivably attempt to capture and/or kill privateers" in their territory while operating under a valid U.S.
(175) The issuance of a cyber letter of marque does not have to have the "bounty hunter" moniker, as it is analogous to a whistleblower or qui tam (176) suit whereby the privateer, minus the constraints of current domestic laws such as the CFAA, may gather information about an attacker or enemy and provide it to the proper authorities in return for monetary compensation.
Despite the many potential applications of a cyber letter of marque, some arguments raise concerns about the legality of its application.