past event

Perfect Tools, Perfect Weapons: The Rise and Future of Digital Technologies

Rapid technological advancements and the proliferation of affordable digital devices have created enormous opportunity for communities worldwide. But it has also created unprecedented risk, as governments and malicious actors seek to exploit vulnerabilities created by tools intended to connect, inform, and improve the lives of billions around the globe. In this two-hour event, the Aspen Strategy Group will examine critical questions around the world’s past, present, and future relationship with technology, including:

• Why have nations turned to cyberwarfare as means to secure their strategic interests?
• Who sets the “norms” for use of advanced technologies, and how will that be articulated on the global stage?
• What is America doing to protect itself from misinformation, disinformation, and cyber-attacks?


John Maggio

John Maggio is a principle producer, director and writer with Ark Media. His film Panic: The Untold Story of the 2008 Financial Crisis (HBO) won the 2019 Emmy Award for Outstanding Business and Economic Documentary and The Newspaperman: The Life and Times of Ben Bradlee (HBO) was nominated for the 2018 Producers Guild Award for best documentary feature. His work includes films for the acclaimed PBS series FRONTLINE (College Inc., Growing up Online) and American Experience (Into the Amazon, The Boy in the Bubble, Kinsey). Maggio’s films have been honored with the National Emmy Award and Writers Guild Award, multiple nominations for News and Documentary Emmy Awards, and have premiered in competition at the Sundance Film Festival. His latest film The Perfect Weapon (HBO) which chronicles the clandestine worldwide cyber war, will premiere on HBO on October 16th, 2020.

David Sanger

David Sanger is a national security correspondent and a senior writer for the New York Times. His newest book, “The Perfect Weapon: War, Sabotage and Fear in the Cyber Age,” was the basis for an HBO documentary by the same name, released this month. Mr. Sanger is the author of two other books, both Times best sellers: “The Inheritance: The World Obama Confronts and the Challenges to American Power” and “Confront and Conceal: Obama’s Secret Wars and Surprising Use of American Power.”

Mr. Sanger has served as Tokyo bureau chief, Washington economic correspondent, and chief Washington correspondent. His reporting revealed how the United States and Israel pulled off the most sophisticated cyberattack in history, against Iran’s nuclear program. That became the subject of the documentary “Zero Days.”

Sanger has been on three teams that have won Pulitzer Prizes. A graduate of Harvard College, he also teaches at the Kennedy School of Government.

Nick Burns

Nicholas Burns is the Goodman Family Professor of the Practice of Diplomacy and International Relations at the Harvard Kennedy School. He is Faculty Chair of the Future of Diplomacy Project and the Project on Europe and the Transatlantic Relationship at the Belfer Center.

Burns is Executive Director of the Aspen Strategy Group and Aspen Security Forum, and Senior Counselor at The Cohen Group. He is Chairman of the Board of Our Generation Speaks.

Burns served in the U.S. government as a career Foreign Service Officer. He was Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs (2005-2008), Ambassador to NATO (2001-2005), Ambassador to Greece (1997-2001) and State Department Spokesman (1995-1997). He worked on the National Security Council as Senior Director for Russia, Ukraine and Eurasia Affairs, Special Assistant to President Clinton, and Director for Soviet Affairs. Burns served in the American Consulate General in Jerusalem and at the American embassies in Egypt and Mauritania.

Event information
Fri Oct 23, 2020
11:00am - 12:00pm EDT