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On differential privacy

22 June 2016 | Comments Off on On differential privacy

Over the past several weeks, there’s been a lot of talk about something called “differential privacy.” What does this mean, how does it work, and… Is it really going to be effective? The basic concept is this: the reason people can identify you, personally, from data collected off your phone, searches, web browser configuration, computer…

BGP Security and SPAM

24 May 2016 | Comments Off on BGP Security and SPAM

Spam might seem like an annoyance in the US and other areas where bandwidth is paid for by the access rate—and what does spam have to do with BGP security? In many areas of the world, however, spam makes email practically unusable. When you’re paying for Internet access by the byte transmitted or received, spam…

Thinking about side channel attacks

17 May 2016 | Comments Off on Thinking about side channel attacks

When Cyrus wanted to capture Babylon, he attacked the river that flows through the city, drying it out and then sending his army under the walls through the river entrance and exit points. In a similar way, the ventilator is a movie favorite, used in both Lord of the Rings and Star Wars, probably along…

Securing BGP: A Case Study

13 May 2016 | Comments Off on Securing BGP: A Case Study

What would it take to secure BGP? Let’s begin where any engineering problem should begin: what problem are we trying to solve? This series of posts walks through a wide range of technical and business problems to create a solid set of requirements against which to measure proposed solutions for securing BGP in the global…

Securing BGP: A Case Study (10)

9 May 2016 |

The next proposed (and actually already partially operational) system on our list is the Router Public Key Infrastructure (RPKI) system, which is described in RFC7115 (and a host of additional drafts and RFCs). The RPKI systems is focused on solving a single solution: validating that the originating AS is authorized to originate a particular prefix.…

Securing BGP: A Case Study (9)

2 May 2016 | Comments Off on Securing BGP: A Case Study (9)

There are a number of systems that have been proposed to validate (or secure) the path in BGP. To finish off this series on BGP as a case study, I only want to look at three of them. At some point in the future, I will probably write a couple of posts on what actually…

Securing BGP: A Case Study (8)

25 April 2016 |

Throughout the last several months, I’ve been building a set of posts examining securing BGP as a sort of case study around protocol and/or system design. The point of this series of posts isn’t to find a way to secure BGP specifically, but rather to look at the kinds of problems we need to think…

Should We Stop Encryption? Can We?

22 March 2016 | Comments Off on Should We Stop Encryption? Can We?

It’s not like they’re asking for a back door for every device. If the world goes dark through encryption, we’ll be back to the wild west! After all, if it were your daughter who had been killed in a terrorist attack, you’d want the government to get to that information, too. While sitting on a…

Reaction: More Encryption is Bad?

15 March 2016 |

This week I was peacefully reading the March 9th issue of ACM Queue when I received a bit of a surprise. It seems someone actually buys the “blame the victim” game, arguing that governments are going to break all encryption if we don’t give them what they want. These ideas are all based on the…

Anonymity isn’t a bug

17 November 2015 | Comments Off on Anonymity isn’t a bug

Despite the bad rap it sometimes gets, anonymity – and anonymity technology – is used all the time by everyday people. Think about it: just walking in a park without being recorded or observed or “going off the grid” are common examples of people seeking to disconnect their identity from their activities. via the center…

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