[LINK] itNews: 'Parlt quietly blocks .info domains'

Roger Clarke Roger.Clarke at xamax.com.au
Tue Feb 14 08:30:14 AEDT 2012

Parliament quietly blocks .info domains
John Hilvert
Feb 13, 2012 12:40 PM (19 hours ago)

For 'network security' reasons.

The Department of Parliamentary Services has blocked access by 
Australia's parliamentarians to some 5.2 million websites with a 
.info domain.

The block, put in place on October 22 last year, was put in place on 
the advice of the Defence Signals Directorate (DSD).

"The advice was that the domain is generally considered to be a 
source of more than its fair share of attacks and malicious 
software," the department's acting secretary David Kenny told a 
Senate Committee in Canberra today.

Since being instituted, the department has unblocked access to 68 
.info sites on request.

Senators are unable to opt-out of the block on .info domains for 
network security reasons. 

"More than a year on from the defeat of the Government's proposed 
mandatory net filter, Australia's parliamentarians have instead 
elected to heavily filter their own web access," Senator Scott Ludlam 
said after the meeting.

"I could walk to the nearest public library and access a .info 
website but they are banned to people working within the Commonwealth 

"I spent two years campaigning to prevent a filter being imposed on 
the general public, who might now appreciate the irony of a vastly 
more expansive filter being imposed on MPs."

Roger Clarke                                 http://www.rogerclarke.com/
Xamax Consultancy Pty Ltd      78 Sidaway St, Chapman ACT 2611 AUSTRALIA
                    Tel: +61 2 6288 1472, and 6288 6916
mailto:Roger.Clarke at xamax.com.au                http://www.xamax.com.au/

Visiting Professor in the Faculty of Law               University of NSW
Visiting Professor in Computer Science    Australian National University

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