This chapter aims to disturb conventional definitions, interrogate general assumptions and challenge the very validity of 'critical infrastructure protection'. The challenge for the investigator is to get inside the operational box while staying outside the semiotic box of security discourse. To understand how the essential features of critical infrastructure - the powerful nodes, hubs and flows of networks - have transformed global politics, one must navigate between state secrecy and corporate opacity as well as between meta-theoretical debates and conventional levels of analysis. The coining of 'critical infrastructure' is more than a single semantic shift: it represents an historical evolution in the determination of what is to be deemed critical. The private sector has a different appreciation for critical infrastructure protection (CIP) than the public sector. Another consideration for the private sector is the role of the US government in standardizing protocols for CIP.