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Internet failures over the next 3 years

  • From: Sean Donelan
  • Date: Tue Jun 22 02:16:13 1999

I've been hearing bits and pieces of this report for a few months.  It
finally showed up on the web Monday.

Network Group - An Examination of the NS/EP Implications of Internet
Technologies - June 1999  <http://www.ncs.gov/nstac/NSTACReports.html>

Its not as bad as I heard.  It is definitely written from the bell-head
perspective. If it didn't have the compulsive need to compare the Internet
to the switched voice network, it would be a better report.  I think the
report does make a mistake in assuming the government is the source of all
NS/EP information.  I suspect if you did a survey of all the three-letter
government agencies about how they obtained their information and updated
anti-virus programs on their super-secret networks for the Melissa and
Explorer.ZIP, most of them downloaded the fixes from the vendor web sites
just like the rest of us.  If they waited for the Black Helicopter
(or FedEx) to deliver their 'secure' media they were vulnerable longer
since the last several outbreaks occurred on a Friday afternoon or
weekend and the fix showed up the following business day.

Ignoring the NS/EP part of the report, the operational issues remain. The
report does cover most of the major Internet operational vulnerabilities:

   - The distributed, informal nature of Internet management
   - The domain name system (DNS)
   - Critical Internet control software and systems
   - Procedural errors

I'm sure each of us would define the problems a bit differently, but
before we get hung up on what "is" is, does anyone care to address the
issues as raised?

Although you can't put this into your Cisco config, I think this is about
as on-topic as we can get for this list.  But I would request you at
least read the report before responding.  Its about 100 pages, and covers
a lot of ground.
-- 
Sean Donelan, Data Research Associates, Inc, St. Louis, MO
  Affiliation given for identification not representation






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