[LINK] NBN security?
kim at holburn.net
Thu Oct 21 14:40:27 EST 2010
On 2010/Oct/19, at 6:30 PM, Roger Clarke wrote:
> At 18:12 +1100 19/10/10, Richard Chirgwin wrote:
>> In terms of traffic privacy, Roger, what's the difference between the
>> NBN and any other carrier network?
> As I wrote in the reference that I cited:
> "governments have sought to detect and repress behaviours by adding
> functions to intermediating nodes on the Internet. ... [Any network
> infrastructure] could be designed to embody, or to facilitate, the
> surveillance of content [e.g. through] the accommodation of the
> function in the NBN architecture and the NBN infrastructure, the
> provision of space on NBN Co.'s premises for specialist equipment,
> enabling the connection of extraneous devices to the network,
> enabling the inclusion of extraneous software in its own devices, and
> the permission of access to its premises by organisations that
> conduct surveillance".
This is a worry. Still, the government has always had the power to
listen on telephone lines, to open letters. Would this be anything
new? And in Australia we have had till recently a government monopoly
on the last mile copper and the nodes and exchanges those connected
to. I don't see this as a lot different. The government is playing
catch-up as regards internet bugging. Listening on the internet is
not necessarily so simple as tapping phones. The internet gives
people several ways to by-pass listeners if they want to, so overall
we are probably better off.
> The NBN is a singular.
> The NBNCo is (pro tem, we're told) government-owned.
> The NBN is to a considerable extent directly government-funded
> (27/43rds of a big number, according to one metric).
> The NBN has objectives that are nationally-strategic (e.g. the
> stimulation of innovation), some that are politically-strategic (e.g.
> recover ownership of the lower layers of information infrastructure
> and achieve structural separation), and some that are
> party-political-strategic (e.g. sustain a majority in the House of
> Reps, in part by wedge-politics, i.e. running an agenda that splits
> the current Opposition leader from the heir-apparent).
> A Government that is largely funding an NBN, through a single
> corporation that it owns, can be expected to swing a bit more lead
> than an alternative Government that instead relied on a gaggle of
> competitors to stump up the money in the hope of gaining enough
> monopoly power in the future to make a motza on the investment.
> And note that I've left Conroy's predilection for censorship out of
> the analysis, so far ...
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