Hard Drive Heritage: Digital Cultural Property in the Law of Armed Conflict

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Richard Ong, JD Candidate 2022, Columbia Law School; B.A. 2019, The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

This Note considers the question of how to protect cultural property in an era of rising cyberwarfare. The Note argues that the law of armed conflict (LOAC)—also referred to as international humanitarian law (IHL)— should apply to protect the three categories of cultural property which cyberwarfare could affect: real-word cultural property, digitized cultural property (cultural property which has been converted into digital form), and digital cultural property (cultural property which has always existed in digital form). Lastly, this Note argues for a novel interpretation of the 1954 Hague Convention for the Protection for Cultural Property that would encompass digital and digitized cultural property.

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