Responsible Network Management Guidelines

Sean Donelan SEAN at SDG.DRA.COM
Wed Oct 1 03:25:54 UTC 1997

Thanks for the comments.

>>    -- The media, radio or television, can be used to inform the public.
>>    Pre-arrangements, and planning are needed to ensure only designated
>>    contacts are made with the media.
>Is there _any_ part of the net that's this globally critical?

Since CNN is going to report this stuff anyway, might as well plan
for it.  This guideline has a dual purpose: 1) to give accurate
information to the media, 2) limit the exposure from someone 'spoofing'
an ISP to the media.

>>    challenge/response code-word or call-back to a known telephone
>>    number.
>Note that this isn't always good enough, if the problem is an attack.
>Call-forwarding and butt-sets, doncha know.

Perhaps I should add an explanation.  The goal of these guidelines is
to document a minimum set of network management policies a responsible
Internet service provider would follow.  It is not meant to be the
'Best Common Practice' because I hope most ISPs would maintain a
'higher' level of preparedness than these minimum guidelines.  I've
deliberately avoided several controversial subjects, such as what
constitutes 'abuse' of the network.

On the other hand, I have tried to set the bar low, but not too low.
If an ISP can't meet this low a set of requirements, I have to wonder
if they could really be called a 'responsible' member of the Internet.
I deliberately weakened several guidelines to allow an ISP of any size
to meet them with hard work.  You can't meet these guidelines with a
check for $25,000.

>Not bad.  But, from down here in the trenches, I think it could use
>another round of flogging.  How much commentary have you gotten on it?

The guidelines have been out for 12 months.  I've received about a
dozen comments or suggestions.  I welcome more comments or suggestions.

To try to bring this to an end, I intend to dump draft guidelines into
the Informational RFC process before the December IETF.  At the October
NANOG I intend to talk to several ISPs whether they can meet the guidelines,
and possibly issue a press release of all the providers who intend to
follow them.
Sean Donelan, Data Research Associates, Inc, St. Louis, MO
  Affiliation given for identification not representation

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