188.8.131.52/16 and house.gov
schnizlein at isoc.org
Thu Oct 2 16:06:35 CDT 2008
This will be my last response on this despite whatever spin follows.
On 2008Oct2, at 4:08 PM, William Allen Simpson wrote:
> John Schnizlein wrote:
>> I connected the internal network of the US House of Representatives
>> to the Internet when I worked there, and operated it through both
>> Democratic and Republican control.
> Aha, I wondered who was to blame....
Thank you for the compliment.
>> I never saw any snooping by either party of the network traffic,
>> and I had sniffers for diagnosing problems in several communication
> Yet, there was verified interception of both House and Senate email
> communications. Nobody claimed it was "on the wire" network
> traffic, as
> there were many weaknesses in the data network security design.
If you know any, please send them to me privately. I can assure the
community that our design and implementation got repeated review and
testing from the best we could find at the time.
> And the vicious fight about our setting up a VPN to bypass the
> controlled system -- as in "if you do this, we'll cut off your network
> access entirely" -- led all concerned to guess that there was a
> reason, not a technical reason. So, I just used non-standard ports,
> some other firewalling, to prevent your staff from detecting it.
I hope no damage was produced by any inadvertent back doors opened by
Since we were not blocking applications other than IRC, I don't know
what you felt you needed to get around.
> Also, there was the long fight about members running their own servers
> (as in member.house.gov), instead of relying on the central servers
> connectivity (www.house.gov/member). Again, we really didn't trust
> Republicans not to examine internal data.
Although I do not recall the particular offices, I do recall that
several committees and members had both email and web servers in their
own offices with domains delegated to them on request. I have no idea
what "long fight" you might have experienced.
>> I do recall unfounded accusations both ways, but it would be sad
>> for the rumors to outlive the reality.
> Like this verified and widely reported:
> "Democrats Suggest Inquiry Points to Wider Spying by G.O.P."
As I recall this was simply a case of one staffer logging into a
server in a different office. As you mentioned above, not "on the
wire" and not a data network security issue. As sometimes still
happens, the "computer network" actually referred to a file server.
This article is about activities in the Senate, which operates
independently of the House - was your experience actually with respect
to the Senate?
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