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We’re Confident Tech Community Can Help Us Solve Challenge of Rogue Sites
Author:  Paul Brigner
Date:  07/14/2011

Authors of a technical white paper on the PROTECT IP Act held a press conference today co-sponsored by the Center for Democracy and Technology and the Internet Society.

The technologists’ report boils down to two main arguments: concerns that the provision of PROTECT IP which requires domain name servers not to resolve to criminal sites will affect developing security standards, and the assumption that the vast majority of Internet users will circumvent the remedies the bill puts in place.

We disagree.

DNSSEC was designed to provide consumers with a secure, trusted connection to services like online banking, commercial transactions, and electronic medical records - not to foreign websites operated by criminals for the purpose of offering counterfeit and infringing works. These evolving protocols should be flexible enough to allow for government, acting pursuant to a court order, to protect intellectual property online. And we have a hard time believing that average Internet users will be willing to reconfigure their computers to evade filters set up by court order when doing so will risk exposure to fraud, identity theft, malware, slower service, and unreliable connections. The PROTECT IP Act makes getting to rogue sites just inconvenient enough that the large majority of users will seek a legitimate option instead.

Here's the bottom line: We rely on the Internet to do too much and be too much to let it decay into a lawless Wild West. We are confident that America's technology community, which leads the world in innovation and creativity, will be capable of developing a technical solution that helps address the serious challenge of rogue sites.