Sr. Policy Advisor, Technology Evangelist at PayPal
Joined on August 23, 2011 – United States
Total Post Views: 36,015
Bill Smith has over 30 years experience ranging from software developer to executive at several companies. He currently is Sr. Policy Advisor, Technology Evangelist at PayPal where he advocates for improvements to the security, stability, and reliability of the Internet. Bill represents PayPal at the IGF, ICANN, ARIN, WSIS, the ITU, the IETF, and the Fido Alliance.. He helps establish and present PayPal’s positions at these and other fora bridging the gaps between technology, policy, and business.
Bill is a frequent panelist on issues related to Internet Governance, security, privacy, and identity and has served the Internet Community for over 20 years through his participation in a variety of organizations in leadership roles. At these organizations he is known for his advocacy of open standards, open source, open governance, and non-assert covenants as a means to develop and promote a free and open Internet.
He currently serves as a Director and Secretary of the Fido Alliance. Bill is a past President and Chair of OASIS, served as co-chair of ebXML, the joint OASIS/United Nations Electronic Business Initiative, past Board member of IEEE-ISTO, and has participated at the W3C including as co-chair of the XML Linking WG.
Prior to joining PayPal, Bill was Sr. Director Business Strategy, Office of the CTO, Sun Microsystems where he helped establish and execute the company's international standards strategy. At Sun, Bill actively participated in the development of secure, privacy-aware digital identity standards as an officer and Board member of the Liberty Alliance and Kantara Initiative.
Bill holds bachelor's and master's degree in Computer Science, both from Brown University.
Except where otherwise noted, all postings by Bill Smith on CircleID are licensed under a Creative Commons License.
The primary means of authentication on the Internet is the password -- a half-century old, shared secret mechanism that is difficult to use (especially on mobile devices) and has acknowledged security flaws including attacks at scale. Even so, passwords remain the most prevalent form of authentication with efforts to enhance security typically relying on "bolt on" solutions that increase user friction. more»
It is midnight in Dubai and I am listening to the final readings of the International Telecommunication Regulations (ITR). This instrument is the final output of two weeks of negotiations at the World Conference on International Telecommunication (WCIT), a gathering of the world's nations to update the the ITRs. The Chair goes through the document article by article, section by section, and with each passing "thank you", this Conference draws to a close. Many in the room are elated. more»
Cybersecurity is a top-of-mind issue with calls for individual vigilance, national legislation, and international treaties to address gaps that are exploited causing significant harm and financial loss on a daily basis. The vast majority of these calls are well-intentioned though even among the best-intentioned, some are poorly directed. Such is the case with all of the proposals that would introduce security into the International Telecommunication Regulations (ITRs) of the International Telecommunication Union (ITU). more»
The ITU, through its Council acting as the executive body of the Member States, made a "landmark decision" to make available to the public "the main [WCIT] conference preparatory document" and to establish a publicly accessible page "where all stakeholders can express their opinions" on the preparatory document or other WCIT-related matters. more»
The European Telecommunications Network Operators' Association (ETNO) has issued a press release in which its Executive Board Chair and the ITU's Secretary-General "reiterated the importance of the WCIT to lay the framework that will facilitate the further growth of an innovative, and sustainable future for the telecom and information and communication technology sector (including the Internet)". more»
I'm sitting in the Popov Room of the ITU Tower in Geneva, the room is quiet, the atmosphere placid, chairs are empty. The final meeting of the CWG WCIT prep WG has just concluded its work and the chair will be reporting to the Council the results of our work. I find myself strangely calm and looking forward to my next week, to be spent in Prague... Should you choose to read through the documents, and they are lengthy at approximately 375 pages, you might think that a number of the proposals were directed at the Internet. more»
On my flight back from Washington, DC last night, I prepared much of what follows, minus references. Today, while looking for references, I uncovered a very recent (6 June 2012) posting to the ITU blog that seemed entirely appropriate to mention here. It is fascinating reading, and I especially like one snippet "we are not about to take over the Internet - that suggestion is frankly ridiculous". I quite agree and hope that the ITU is genuinely interested in working with others to ensure that nothing of the sort happens. Now on to what I had prepared. more»
I've been threatening to blog for several years now. I can't recall for how many years I've left the threat open, but hopefully you'll understand given the title of this piece, that I'm prone to senior moments. For the past two years I've been immersed in Internet Governance, an area I knew precious little about before being tossed into the deep end of the pool... My current employer, PayPal (eBay), recognizes the importance of cat herding, and has formed a group that I am fortunate to be part of, that specializes in Internet Standards and Governance. more»