Off-key: Internet security update postponed

Internet key.jpeg

An important organisation I’ve never heard of has announced the postponement of a scheme to make the internet more secure.

The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) intended to change the cryptographic key that secures the domain name system (DNS) on 11 October, but has called it off because recent data has shown that a worrying amount of ‘resolvers’ used by ISPs and network operators are not ready.

Altering this mysterious key involves creating a new ‘cryptographic key pair’ and then ‘distributing the new public component to the Domain Name System Security Extensions (DNSSEC)-validating resolvers’. Well, I assume they know what they’re talking about/doing.

ICANN says that based on the number of people on the net who use ‘DNSSEC validating resolvers’ a quarter of the world’s internet users (750 million people) ‘could be affected by the KSK rollover’.

A man who according to ICANN’s press release doesn’t have a job title and is known only as ‘Göran Marby’ said: ‘The security, stability and resiliency of the domain name system is our core mission. We would rather proceed cautiously and reasonably, than continue with the roll on the announced date of 11 October. It would be irresponsible to proceed with the roll after we have identified these new issues that could adversely affect its success and could adversely affect the ability of a significant number of end users.’

As long as none of this affects my ability to access Wikipedia when I suddenly need to find out who directed Gremlins or something like that, I’m cool with it.

Read the whole press release here – your life might just depend on it (though you’ll probably be fine).

Off-key: Internet security update postponed

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