Feeds

Vixie warns: DNS Changer ‘blackouts’ inevitable

Father of BIND fears ISP crisis in July

Security for virtualized datacentres

Ridding the world of the DNS Changer is proving a long, slow process that won’t be accomplished by July 9, when the court orders granted to the FBI expire and infected users suffer their inevitable blackout.

That’s the bleak warning given by BIND father and ISC founder and chair Paul Vixie to the AusCERT security conference on the Gold Coast today, 17 May.

“Remediation, which has not worked, has taken many forms, which did not work,” Vixie drily noted.

The notorious “operation ghost click” is well-known and understood, having been analysed in the six months since arrest of the Estonians (Vladimir Tsatsin, Timur Gerassimenko, Dmitri Jegorov, Valeri Aleksejev, Konstantin Poltev and Anton Ivanov) who hosted their ad-redirecting DNS on Rove Digital’s infrastructure.

Vixie said ISC’s ongoing research demonstrates that when the court order expires, there will still be in the vicinity of 300,000 DNS Changer-infected computers, in spite of the best efforts at remediation. Many users, Vixie said, are so untrusting and hostile that they resent being told they have a problem.

On the coming “dark day”, Vixie says, there’s a strong likelihood that ISPs will be swamped with help calls demanding to know what’s wrong. Had it been possible to do so, Vixie said, he would at least have contrived some way to “spread out the pain”, because “the way we’re doing it now, there will be no end to it.”

Although the DNS Changer incident emphasizes the importance of DNSSec, implementation is a slow process that depends on industry-wide cooperation.

He also took the opportunity to criticize the increasing willingness of governments to try and use misdirected DNS requests to enforce policies (such as porn-blocking or, in the case of Italy, blocking offshore gambling site).

“If it becomes popular [to use DNS] to block things that users want, they will move their DNS requests elsewhere.” The threat remains, however: SOPA-style legislation is still on the wish-list of entertainment lobbies, and will not leave the political agenda. ®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
NASTY SSL 3.0 vuln to be revealed soon – sources (Update: It's POODLE)
So nasty no one's even whispering until patch is out
Russian hackers exploit 'Sandworm' bug 'to spy on NATO, EU PCs'
Fix imminent from Microsoft for Vista, Server 2008, other stuff
Microsoft pulls another dodgy patch
Redmond makes a hash of hashing add-on
'LulzSec leader Aush0k' found to be naughty boy not worthy of jail
15 months home detention leaves egg on feds' faces as they grab for more power
Forget passwords, let's use SELFIES, says Obama's cyber tsar
Michael Daniel wants to kill passwords dead
FBI boss: We don't want a backdoor, we want the front door to phones
Claims it's what the Founding Fathers would have wanted – catching killers and pedos
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
Win a year’s supply of chocolate
There is no techie angle to this competition so we're not going to pretend there is, but everyone loves chocolate so who cares.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.