[Cryptography] Opening Discussion: Speculation on "BULLRUN"

Doug Barton dougb at dougbarton.us
Sun Sep 8 22:44:05 UTC 2013

On 09/08/2013 02:25 AM, Eugen Leitl wrote:
> ----- Forwarded message from Gregory Perry <Gregory.Perry at govirtual.tv> -----
> Date: Sat, 7 Sep 2013 21:14:47 +0000
> From: Gregory Perry <Gregory.Perry at govirtual.tv>
> To: Phillip Hallam-Baker <hallam at gmail.com>
> Cc: "cryptography at metzdowd.com" <cryptography at metzdowd.com>, ianG <iang at iang.org>
> Subject: Re: [Cryptography] Opening Discussion: Speculation on "BULLRUN"
> On 09/07/2013 05:03 PM, Phillip Hallam-Baker wrote:
> Good theory only the CA industry tried very hard to deploy and was prevented from doing so because Randy Bush abused his position as DNSEXT chair to prevent modification of the spec to meet the deployment requirements in .com.
> DNSSEC would have deployed in 2003 with the DNS ATLAS upgrade had the IETF followed the clear consensus of the DNSEXT working group and approved the OPT-IN proposal. The code was written and ready to deploy.
> I told the IESG and the IAB that the VeriSign position was no bluff and that if OPT-IN did not get approved there would be no deployment in .com. A business is not going to spend $100million on deployment of a feature that has no proven market demand when the same job can be done for $5 million with only minor changes.

I was also there in 2003, and for a long time before that, and was also 
one of the voices that was saying that we needed opt-in, and protection 
from zone walking, or else the thing wouldn't fly. I don't recall that 
any 1 person was the reason those things didn't happen sooner than they 
did; in fact I recall near-universal sentiment that zone walking was a 
non-issue, and that opt-in defeated the very nature of what DNSSEC was 
trying to accomplish.

Fast forward to my time at IANA in 2004 and after considerable behind 
the scenes organization a coalition of TLD registries came forward and 
said that they would not deploy DNSSEC without those 2 features, and 
were willing to dedicate the resources to create them. So it was not 1 
person who stopped DNSSEC deployment, and it wasn't 1 person who made it 

Your larger point about fiefdoms and oligarchies in the IETF is, 
however, tragically accurate. The blindness of the DNSSEC literati to 
the real-world needs was a huge part of what caused the delay in 
deployment on the authoritative side, and the malaise caused by the 
decade+ of fighting to get it out the door is a big contributor to 
what's preventing any real solution to the last mile problem (which is 
what it takes to make DNSSEC really useful).


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