Privacy / Featured Blogs

Thinking Ahead on Privacy in the Domain Name System

Earlier this year, I wrote about a recent enhancement to privacy in the Domain Name System (DNS) called qname-minimization. Following the principle of minimum disclosure, this enhancement reduces the information content of a DNS query to the minimum necessary to get either an authoritative response from a name server, or a referral to another name server. more»

'The Global Village' Idiot

I recall from some years back, when we were debating in Australia some national Internet censorship proposal de jour, that if the Internet represented a new Global Village then Australia was trying very hard to position itself as the Global Village Idiot. And the current situation with Australia's new Data Retention laws may well support a case for reviving that sentiment. more»

ICANN Should Curb Anonymous Domain Name Abuses

E-commerce has revolutionized how businesses sell to consumers -- including those involved in illicit activities, such as websites peddling illegal narcotics, pirated movies and music, or counterfeit handbags. For example, 96 percent of Internet pharmacies do not comply with U.S. laws, and as they ship pills tainted with paint thinner, arsenic, and rat poison, they put the health and safety of consumers at risk. Why don't law enforcement officials do more to combat this problem? Partly because of the difficulty of identifying who is actually operating the illegal pharmacies. It is time to fix this, while allowing anonymity for those who deserve it. more»

How to Move Cybersecurity Forward in a More Positive Way

In 2013 I wrote a blog Telecoms as a spying tool, in which I mentioned that those who use the internet to spy indiscriminately will have to face the reality that such activities will only start a cat-and-mouse game -- the technology will always be able to stay one step ahead of those who are using the internet for criminal purposes. Since that time some very significant developments have taken place that have confirmed our prediction. more»

Toward a Balanced ICANN Accreditation Program for Privacy and Proxy Service Providers

For the past two years a diverse group of stakeholders from the ICANN community, including myself, has been working hard to come to a consensus on a set of recommendations related to development and implementation of an ICANN accreditation program for privacy & proxy service providers. The result of this effort will replace the interim specification defined in the 2013 Registrar Accreditation Agreement (RAA) that is due to expire at the end of 2016. more»

Confessions of an Ex-Opponent of Whois Privacy

The following is the easyDNS response to ICANN's public comment period on GNSO Privacy & Proxy Services Accreditation Issues Working Group Initial Report. The public comment period is open until July 7, 2015. We strongly urge you to make your voice known by signing the petition over at Save Domain Privacy. I submit these comments as a CEO of an ICANN accredited registrar, a former director to CIRA and a lifelong anti spam contributor with an unblemished record of running a managed DNS provider that maintains zero tolerance for net abuse or cybercrime... more»

.WTF Domain Being Used In Privacy Campaign

ICANN comment periods on policy proposals don't normally garner much attention. In the case of the current comment period on proxy/privacy services, however, things are very different. To date several thousand comments have been filed, while the topic of the policy proposals has received media attention across hundreds of outlets. more»

Cyptech Needs You!

In August of last year I wrote in a blog about the importance of cryptech to wide-scale trust in the Internet. For those who don't know about it, is a project aiming to design and deploy an openly developed, trustable Hardware Security Module (HSM) which can act both as a keystore (holding your secrets and keeping them private) and as a signing engine. more»

Back from RightsCon Manila: Trading Freedoms for Security?

In Asia -- a region that at various points in its recent history has been a hotbed for civil unrest, secessionist movements and political instability -- the line between national security and public interest can be difficult to draw. A session organised by the Internet Society at the recently held RightsCon Southeast Asia in Manila shed some light on the perceived trade-offs between national security objectives and digital rights, in particular freedom of expression and privacy. more»

Active and Passive Internet of Things

"The most profound technologies are those that disappear. They weave themselves into the fabric of everyday life until they are indistinguishable from it." -Mark Weiser ...The Internet of Things is a step in this very direction. And like all things new and mysterious, it has its fair share of utopian and dystopian soothsayers; with an almost certain probability that neither of their deterministic predictions will completely come to fruition in the future. more»