Telechat Review of draft-irtf-rrg-recommendation-
I have reviewed this document as part of the security directorate's
ongoing effort to review all IETF documents being processed by the IESG.
These comments were written primarily for the benefit of the security area
directors. Document editors and WG chairs should treat these comments
just like any other last call comments.
I unfortunately was off-net for a few days and got to this assignment
rather late. The document is long and covers a broad swath of material
and I was not able to cover it deeply.
This document is a product of the rrg IRTF working group. It summarizes
15 different proposals for a new routing and addressing architecture for
the Internet, with short summaries, critiques and rebuttals for each, and
gives a final recommendation to the IETF for future direction.
With the breadth of scope of the document, there is no way for me to
review each proposal's documents for security considerations.
The security considerations of *this* document itself is quite terse:
20. Security Considerations
All solutions are required to provide security that is at least as
strong as the existing Internet routing and addressing architecture.
Given the widely reported weakness of the "existing Internet routing and
addressing architecture", this is a low bar indeed. There are attempts in
progress to attempt to improve the security of the Internet routing and
addressing architecture. I do not know what to suggest if these
improvements leave the Internet with stronger security than is provided by
The summaries of the different proposals devote little attention to the
infrastructure security ramifications of the proposal. Given the stated
goal, perhaps no attention was necessary.
Many of these proposals include an encapsulation system, presenting the
expected difficulties with end system authentication, filtering systems at
boundaries, etc. Some proposals addressed these concerns. I am not sure
if the security considerations section meant that the proposals were
required to avoid weakening the end-host security protections already
provided (ipsec, NAT, whatever).
The rrg wg came to consensus that a fundamental architectural feature is
a separation of locator and identifier for any node. Many of the
discussed alternatives include a mapping system that produce a locator for
a given destination identifier.
The mapping system would seem to be a very likely point of vulnerability,
permitting traffic redirection for data exposure or blackholing, etc.
Many proposals suggest a hierarchic architecture of the mapping system for
scaling purposes. I would presume that an authorization scheme for the
mapping system would be essential, and that the hierarchy would be an
important aspect of that scheme. Of course, I can't tell much at this
level of detail about how and if each proposals addresses this. (One of
the recommendations suggests communicating mapping info through bgp - I
can not say at this point whether the SIDR suggestions for improving bgp
security would be applicable.)
PMTUD Path Maximum Transmission Unit Discovery: The process or
mechanism that determines the largest packet that can be sent
between a given source and destination with being either i)
fragmented (IPv4 only), or ii) discarded (if not fragmentable)
because it is too large to be sent down one link in the path from
the source to the destination.
It should say "*without* being either", right? A long sentence so I may
have lost my place.
Several of the comments start using terms that are part of the wg
deliberations, I'm sure. But it makes reading the discussions and
critiques obtuse. In particular, "Core-Edge Separation" and "Core-Edge
Elimination" seems to a well understood concept in the wg. It needs to be
defined somewhere. A web search found references in some conference
papers and in rrg mailing lists.