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    Highlights of the ICANNWatch Archive
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    This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.
    "We're Moving Backwards" on ICANN Transparency | Log in/Create an Account | Top | 105 comments | Search Discussion
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    Ready for a Real Laugh From the Internet Mafia ???
    by Anonymous on Friday August 05 2005, @06:32AM (#15797)
    http://www.merit.edu/mail.archives/nanog/msg10152. html

    DARPA and the network

        * From: Michael.Dillon
        * Date: Thu Aug 04 09:21:44 2005

    Since the modern military runs on networks, DARPA funds various
    programs to make networks better and more secure. One of these
    was CHATS. Here is the business case taken from the DARPA
    budget justification:
    The Composable High Assurance Trusted Systems (CHATS) program
    is developing the tools and technology that enable the core network
    services to be protected from the introduction and execution of
    malicious code or other attack techniques and methods. These
    tools and technologies will provide the security services needed
    to achieve comprehensive-secure, highly distributed, mission-critical
    information systems for the DoD. A unique feature of CHATS is that
    these system capabilities will be developed by engaging the
    open-source community in security functionality for existing
    open-source operating systems. Additionally, DARPA will
    engage the open-source community in a consortium-based
    approach to create a ?neutral?, secure operating system
    architecture framework. This security architecture framework
    will then be used to develop techniques for composing OS
    capabilities to support both servers and clients in the increasing
    network-centric communications fabric of the DoD. In FY 2003 the
    CHATS program will move to project ST-24 in this program element.
    For a time, DARPA even funded the ongoing work of the OpenBSD
    team but political disagreements over the Iraq war scuttled that
    work. In roughly the same time frame, there was a project called
    LSAP (Linux Security Audit Project) that attenmpted to extend
    the methodology of OpenBSD to Linux. This was succeeded by
    Sardonix which attempted to create a register of all audited open
    source software. For various reasons both of these projects fizzled.

    So why did OpenBSD succeed in their rigorous audit process?
    I believe it is because there was a firm hand at the helm who was
    able to keep them focused on their non-profit goal, namely
    secure operating software. Now corporations do share one
    characteristic with OpenBSD which should allow them to be
    able to succeed in the same way. They have firm hands at the
    helm. However, they also have the profit motive and it is often
    possible for corporations to avoid security issues in their
    systems and make profits anyway. That's where NANOG
    comes in. We are the customers of the router and switch
    manufacturers. We have the ability to tie the corporate profit
    motive together with a security imperative.

    I know that people on this list would rather talk about how
    to tweak the boxes and protocols to do the best with what
    we have available, but I think times have changed. The
    global community of hackers is our Al Qaeda, a leaderless
    mob that wants to break the network and control the network.
    If we want to prevent this, then we have to work as hard and
    as smart as the many people who are tackling Islamist
    terrorist cells. It's no longer good enough to just do the
    best we can with the boxes that vendors give us when
    those boxes are so easily compromised and when there
    is a community of people who are specifically targetting
    those boxes, unlike in the past.

    --Michael Dillon

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