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CCR Symposium: Practical Aspects of IP Logging

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6 Responses

  1. Paul Ohm says:

    I think you raise a lot of excellent points, David, and I’m very glad you’re participating. I will counter, however, that you might be overstating the NAT point. Many, many harassers are probably not obscured by NAT in this way. Most home users–even the ones behind NAT routers–are traceable to someone with their IP address and a civil subpoena. If the law does nothing but cause would-be harassers to scurry to open access points, Internet cafes, and the benches outside the Princeton CS building, while forcing them all to stop harassing from home, that’s still a major accomplishment, as far as I am concerned.

    I’d also recommend you look at the growing comment thread to Prof. Froomkin’s post, if you haven’t already, where we’re debating related topics.

  2. All points well taken. There would indeed be some cases, perhaps a large number, where technically unskilled or uncareful Internet harassers, operating from home, would be easier to find thanks to this policy. And those cases might justify the policy.

    I guess the main thing I was trying to illustrate is that even if Danielle would prefer traceable anonymity to be comprehensive, the policy she has suggested would not come close to making it so. This also responds to Prof. Froomkin’s claim; I’ll take it up over there.

  3. For those who want a detailed look at some of the technical issues in traceability, let me refer them to Richard Clayton’s PhD dissertation “Anonymity and traceability in cyberspace” (http://www.cl.cam.ac.uk/techreports/UCAM-CL-TR-653.html), especially chapters 2-3.

  4. Note: I just realized that I was making an incorrectly broad use of the term “traceable anonymity” which, as its name would suggest, applies to only the first of Danielle’s three-pronged standard of care. I regret the error and won’t repeat it.

  5. Note: I just realized that I was making an incorrectly broad use of the term “traceable anonymity” which, as its name would suggest, applies to only the first of Danielle’s three-pronged standard of care. I’ve now corrected that above. I regret the error and won’t repeat it.