Archive for the 'Policy' Category

Comment In the Matter of Protecting and Promoting the Open Internet

Monday, September 22nd, 2014 by kc claffy

From the executive summary of public comment to FCC GN Docket No. 14-28., Approaches to transparency aimed at minimizing harm and maximizing investment (by David Clark, Steve Bauer, and kc claffy):

Embedded in a challenging legal and historical context, the FCC must act in the short term to address concerns about harmful discriminatory behavior. But its actions should be consistent with an effective, long-term approach that might ultimately reflect a change in legal framing and authority. In this comment we do not express a preference among short-term options, e.g., section 706 vs. Title II. Instead we suggest steps that would support any short-term option chosen by the FCC, but also inform debate about longer term policy options. Our suggestions are informed by recent research on Internet connectivity structure and performance, from technical as well as business perspectives, and our motivation is enabling fact-based policy. Our line of reasoning is as follows.

  1. Recent discourse about Internet regulation has focused on whether or how to regulate discrimination rather than on its possible harms and benefits. For four reasons, we advocate explicit attention to possible harms, their causes, and means to prevent them. First, the court has stated that while the FCC cannot ban traffic discrimination unless it reclassifies Internet access providers under Title II, the FCC does have the authority to remedy harms. Second, a focus on harms provides a possible way to govern specialized services, which are currently not subject to traffic management constraints. Third, if the FCC chooses Title II, it will open up many questions about which parts to enforce, which will require a discussion of the harms vs. benefits of selective forbearance. Fourth, any new regulatory framework would be well-served by a thorough understanding of
    potential harms and benefits that result from behavior of various actors.
  2. (more…)

Hot interconnection links: a HOT topic

Sunday, June 22nd, 2014 by kc claffy

We’re seeing unprecedented interest in the debate around whose responsibility it is to upgrade the Internet to handle current and impending demand. The carriers have expressed their positions (Verizon, Comcast, AT&T), as have intermediate content providers (e.g., Cogent, Level3), and large content providers such as Netflix. And while Netflix defends its version of transparency, there is clearly room for improvement (Each side emphasizing the need for more transparency from the other side).

A few more timely and related developments this week:

  1. The FCC finally begins to pursue more transparency.
  2. Independent industry group BITAG is undertaking its own effort to improve transparency about how Internet interconnection works.
  3. This past week the MIT CSAIL Information Policy Project and the Congressional Internet Caucus Advisory Committee hosted a briefing introducing our (CAIDA/MIT) research developing methods to detect interdomain congestion at specific location (presented two weeks ago to BITAG). (Audio available here (almost 2 hours).) Plenty of press reports followed.

Stay tuned, much more to say here.

DHS S&T PREDICT PI Meeting, Marina del Rey, CA

Friday, June 6th, 2014 by Josh Polterock

On 28-29 May 2014, DHS Science and Technology Directorate (S&T) held a meeting of the Principal Investigators of the PREDICT (Protected Repository for the Defense of Infrastructure Against Cyber Threats) Project, an initiative to facilitate the accessibility of computer and network operational data for use in cybersecurity defensive R&D. The project is a three-way partnership among government, critical information infrastructure providers, and security development communities (both academic and commercial), all of whom seek technical solutions to protect the public and private information infrastructure. The primary goal of PREDICT is to bridge the gap between producers of security-relevant network operations data and technology developers and evaluators who can leverage this data to accelerate the design, production, and evaluation of next-generation cybersecurity solutions.

In addition to presenting project updates, each PI presented on a special topic suggested by Program Manager Doug Maughan. I presented some reflective thoughts on 10 Years Later: What Would I Have done Differently? (Or what would I do today?). In this presentation, I revisited my 2008 top ten list of things lawyers should know about the Internet to frame some proposed forward-looking strategies for the PREDICT project in 2014.

Also noted at the meeting, DHS recently released a new broad agency announcement (BAA) that will contractually require investigators contribute into PREDICT any data created or used in testing and evaluation of the funded work (if the investigator has redistribution rights, and subject to appropriate disclosure control).

NDN for humans

Tuesday, April 22nd, 2014 by CAIDA Webmaster

Recently posted to the Named-Data Networking site:

In an attempt to lower the barriers to understanding this revolutionary (as well as evolutionary) way of looking at networking, three recently posted documents are likely to answer many of your questions (and inspire a few more):

(1) Almost 5 years ago, Van gave a 3+ hour tutorial on Content-Centric Networking for the Future Internet Summer School (FISS 09) hosted by the University of Bremen in Germany. We finally extracted an approximate transcript of this goldmine and are making it available, along with pointers to the slides and (4-part) video of his tutorial hosted by U. Bremen.

(Our FAQ answers the commonly asked question of How does NDN differ from Content-Centric Networking (CCN))

(2) A short (8-page) technical report, Named Data Networking, introducing the Named Data Networking architecture. (A version of this report will appear soon in ACM Computer Communications Review.)

(3) Another technical report exploring he potential social impacts of NDN: A World on NDN: Affordances & Implications of the Named Data Networking Future Internet Architecture. This paper highlights four departures from today’s TCP/IP architecture, which underscore the social impacts of NDN: the architecture’s emphases on enabling semantic classification, provenance, publication, and decentralized communication. These changes from TCP/IP could expand affordances for free speech, and produce positive outcomes for security, privacy and anonymity, but raise new challenges regarding data retention and forgetting. These changes might also alter current corporate and law enforcement content regulation mechanisms by changing the way data is identified, handled, and routed across the Web.

We welcome feedback on these and any NDN publications.

Correlation between country governance regimes and the reputation of their Internet (IP) address allocations

Monday, April 15th, 2013 by Bradley Huffaker

[While getting our feet wet with D3 (what a wonderful tool!), we finally tried this analysis tidbit that's been on our list for a while.]

We recently analyzed the reputation of a country’s Internet (IPv4) addresses by examining the number of blacklisted IPv4 addresses that geolocate to a given country. We compared this indicator with two qualitative measures of each country’s governance. We hypothesized that countries with more transparent, democratic governmental institutions would harbor a smaller fraction of misbehaving (blacklisted) hosts. The available data confirms this hypothesis. A similar correlation exists between perceived corruption and fraction of blacklisted IP addresses.

For more details of data sources and analysis, see:
http://www.caida.org/research/policy/country-level-ip-reputation/

x:Corruption Perceptions Index
y:IP population %
x:Democracy Index
y:IP population %
x:Democracy Index
y:IP infection %

Interactive graph and analysis on the CAIDA website

Second Workshop on Internet Economics (WIE2011)

Monday, March 5th, 2012 by kc claffy

As part of our NSF-funded network research project on modeling Internet interconnection dynamics, we hosted the second Workshop on Internet Economics (WIE2011) last December 1-2. The goal of the workshop was to bring together network technology and policy researchers with providers of commercial Internet facilities and services (network operators) to further explore the common objective of framing an agenda for the emerging but empirically stunted field of Internet infrastructure economics. The final report (http://www.caida.org/publications/papers/2012/wie11_report/) attempts to capture the content, structure, and depth of the discussions, and presents relevant open research questions identified by workshop participants. From the intro (but the 5-page pdf is worth reading):
(more…)

The Menlo Report and its Companion bring ethical guidelines to ITC research

Tuesday, February 7th, 2012 by Josh Polterock

Finally, a process we started almost three years ago has reached a milestone: the first public draft of The Menlo Report: Ethical Principles Guiding Information and Communication Technology Research and its Companion Report were posted on the DHS and SRI web sites (respectively) last month.

DHS’s Science and Technology Directorate, through its PREDICT program, sponsored this report on ethics in Information and Communication Technology Research (ICTR). The culmination of a multi-year effort by network and security research stakeholders to lay out a guiding framework to identify, navigate, and resolve ethical issues in ICTR, this report is intended to be a dialogue launch point for the community of researchers, oversight entities, and policymakers to reflect on ethical issues in security and network research. Public comments are encouraged via the Federal Register through 27 February 2012. I’m pretty sure all comments are responded to and/or integrated into the next version of this report. Hopefully the report will also be the topic of discussion at some conferences and workshops this year, so that the community can get out ahead of these issues before we find ourselves facing legislative overreaction to catastrophe (or even perceived catastrophe). Please consider reading and submitting a comment.

Shutting the phone network off while you’re running out of internet protocol numbers

Friday, January 20th, 2012 by kc claffy

I ended 2011 with a short (20 December) visit to a pleasantly warm Washington, D.C. for my 5th FCC Technical Advisory Council meeting. Some of the discussions from the third meeting were extended, others cut off for lack of time. We spent over an hour on the suggestion made by the Legacy Transition working group two meetings ago to advise the FCC to move forward in sunsetting (although we shunned that term at this meeting — “It’s a new beginning, not an end!”) the public-switched telephone network (PSTN). Many questions have arisen repeatedly in the discussions over the course of the last two meetings (and two FCC workshops in between), notably, “What happens to the telephony numbering system?” The initial strategy was imprecise, “The numbering plan will continue to exist but governance and allocation process needs to be considered.” Another repeated question has been “What exactly do we mean by PSTN?”

(more…)

network neutrality: the meme, its cost, its future.

Friday, August 26th, 2011 by kc claffy

Policy making has become predominated by sponsored research, politics, campaign contributions and rhetoric. In light of an apparent disinterest for the facts it comes as no surprise that the network neutrality debate highlights opposing perceptions about the impact from changes in the next generation Internet. Regrettably no unbiased fact finding appears readily available, because politicization at the FCC prevents fair minded assessment by the Democratic and Republican Commissioners and heretofore the conflict has not generated a question of law or fact reviewable by a court.
— Rob Frieden: Internet 3.0: Identifying Problems and Solutions to the Network Neutrality Debate, 2007
.

in June I participated on a panel on network neutrality hosted at the June cybersecurity meeting of the DHS/SRI Infosec Technology Transition Council (ITTC), where “experts and leaders from the government, private, financial, IT, venture capitalist, and academia and science sectors come together to address the problem of identity theft and related criminal activity on the Internet.” Here is a belated recap of my thoughts on that panel, including what network neutrality has to do with cybersecurity.

(more…)

Underneath the Hood: Ownership vs. Stewardship of the Internet

Tuesday, August 23rd, 2011 by kc claffy

[I posted the following on CircleID today:]

As is well known to most CircleID readers — but importantly, not to most other Internet users — in March 2011, ICANN knowingly and purposefully embraced an unprecedented policy that will encourage filtering, blocking, and/or redirecting entire virtual neighborhoods, i.e., “top-level domains” (TLDs). Specifically, ICANN approved the creation of the “.XXX” suffix, intended for pornography websites. Although the owner of the new .XXX TLD deems a designated virtual enclave for morally controversial material to be socially beneficial for the Internet, this claim obfuscates the dangers such a policy creates under the hood.

(more…)