Keith Moore wrote:
. . .
3. Aside from the technical implications of intercepting traffic,
redirecting it to unintended destinations, or forging traffic from
someone else's IP address - there are also legal, social, moral and
commercial implications of doing so.
You will need to be far more specific here. I see absolutely nothing that
is not legal, is not social, or is not moral.
Okay, I'll offer a few specific examples, by no means the only ones:
1. an Internet service provider which deliberately intercepts traffic
(say, an IP packet) which was intended for one address or service,
and delivers it to another address or service (say that of an interception
proxy) may be misrepresenting the service it provides (it's not really
providing IP datagram delivery service because IP doesn't work this way).
Okay, I think I see the mistake you're making. You're crossing
abstraction layers and conflating two different things (the name of
a service with the end point of the connection to that service). You
are criticizing the moving of an endpoint when what you really
object to is the misrepresentation of a service. Or do you also
object to HTTP redirects, dynamic URL rewriting, CNAMEs, telephone
Call Forwarding, or post office redirecting of mail after you move?
A while ago Fedex tried an advertizing campaign in which they
explained to people that when you send a packet from New York to
Chicago, the package is actually routed down to Tennessee (or where
ever it is) and then sent back up to the destination. They wanted
people to see how clever they were, in sending all their packets on
this round-about trip, thus getting it there *much* faster.
The campaign apparently confused people, and made them nervous, so
they dropped it, but the point is still valid. If what you want is a
particular service (fast information delivery), don't confuse that
with the lower lever transport layer issues (packet delivery). It
may well be desireable to reroute things to get improved service at
a higher abstraction layer. I see nothing "illegal" about Fedex
sending my packet to Tennessee and I see nothing immoral about
Earthlink, MCI, Cisco and CNN all getting together to route my
packets to whichever one of Akami's caches is the most appropriate
one for me to go to today. After all, I didn't ask CNN to send me
packets, I asked CNN for today's news.
Now, misrepresenting myself as someone else may well be fraud, a
well defined crime, so someone else offering me news and pretending
it's from CNN is wrong, but that's nothing to do with IP packet
delivery. You're thinking at the wrong abstraction layer. Changing
IP addresses may *result* in fraud, depending upon why you do it,
but it doesn't constitute fraud in and of itself ("routers don't
mislead people, people mislead people..." ;-)
Bottom line is, you seem pretty confused here. Sadly, you take this
in really strange directions (see below).
2. an internet service provider which deliberately forges IP datagrams
using the source address of a content provider, to make it appear
that the traffic was originated by that content provider
(interception proxies do this), may be misrepresenting that content
provider by implicitly claiming that the service conveyed to the user
by the ISP is the one provided by the content provider.
Keith, this is a legal issue. We don't do legal issues here. If
someone is misrepresenting themselves, and causing harm, there are
very clearly defined legal mechanisms to address that. This is *so*
far outside the purvue of the IETF that I can't figure out what
you're even trying to accomplish. Out of curiosity, do you even have
any legal training??
. . .
now whether any of these is actually illegal would be up to a court
to decide, and different courts in different jurisdictions might rule
differently (especially depending on the particulars of a test case)
but each of these is similar to behavior that in other communications
domains would be illegal. and regardless of whether the grounds is
technical, legal, or moral, none of these behaviors seems like
something that IETF should support.
So because someone can pick up a router and beat someone to death
with it, we shouldn't build routers? Or do you honestly think it
appropriate that we add a "legal" section to RFCs?
. . .
May I suggest that one treat this in its classical sense - as a Request
for Comments and that those who have technical objections or technical
enhancements publish those comments in an additional document rather than
try to suppress the original one.
RFCs have not been treated in this sense for many years. And while
such treatment may have made sense in the early days of the ARPAnet
with a community of a few hundred users, it does not make sense in
an Internet with tens of millions of users.
The reality is that today, many documents submitted for RFCs are rejected.
I'm simply arguing that this document should be added to that set.
or at least, that it needs substantial revision before it is found
So you are arguing for explicit censorship of ideas based upon your
own moral assessment of the potential misuse of those ideas? Wow.
Now *that* is a dangerous notion indeed. I sincerely hope it is not
a widely held one within the echelons of the IETF...
Peter Deutsch work email: pdeutsch(_at_)cisco(_dot_)com
Content Services Business Unit private:
Cisco Systems or : peterd(_at_)the(_dot_)web
Alcohol and calculus don't mix. Never drink and derive.