Revealed: The Internet's well known BGP behavior

Randy Bush randy at
Thu Aug 28 16:15:22 CDT 2008

Steven M. Bellovin wrote:
> On Thu, 28 Aug 2008 10:16:16 -0500
> "Anton Kapela" <tkapela at> wrote:
>> I thought I'd toss in a few comments, considering it's my fault that
>> few people are understanding this thing yet.
>>>> On Thu, Aug 28, 2008 at 2:28 PM, Gadi Evron <ge at>
>>>> wrote:
>>>>> People (especially spammers) have been hijacking networks for a
>>>>> while
>> I'd like to 'clear the air' here. Clearly, I failed at Defcon, WIRED,
>> AFP, and Forbes.
>> We all know sub-prefix hijacking is not news. What is news? Using
>> as-path loop detection to selectively blackhole the hijacked route -
>> which creates a transport path _back to_ the target.
>> That's all it is, nothing more. All but the WIRED follow-up article
>> missed this point *completely.* They over-represented the 'hijacking'
>> aspects, while only making mention of the 'interception' potential.
>> Lets end this thread with the point I had intended two weeks ago:
>> we've presented a method by which all the theory spewed by academics
>> can be actualized in a real network (the big-I internet) to effect
>> interception of data between (nearly) arbitrary endpoints from
>> (nearly) any edge or stub AS. That, I think, is interesting.
> Indeed, and I thank you for it.  As noted, I and others have been
> warning about the problem for a long time.  You've shown that it isn't
> just an ivory tower exercise; maybe people will now get serious about
> deploying a solution.
> To quote Bruce Schneier quoting an NSA maxim, attacks only get better;
> they never get worse.  We now have running code of one way to do this.
> I think most NANOG readers can see many more ways to do it.  A real
> solution will take years to deploy, but it will never happen if we
> don't start.  And we want to have the solution out there *before* we
> see serious attacks on BGP.
> Again, thank you -- it was really nice work.


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