RIPE, Europe's Internet governance body, opposes a proposal to reshape basic Internet protocols supported by the Chinese government, Chinese telecommunications companies and network equipment provider Huawei.
The proposal, called "New IP", is a reworked version of the TCP/IP standards to support new technologies. It includes a "shutdown protocol" to shut down faulty parts of the Internet and a new governance model that centralizes the Internet and puts it in the hands of a few critical node operators.
Submitted last year to the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) and published last month by the Financial Times, the new proposal immediately drew criticism. To the general public and privacy advocates, it is an obvious attempt to hide Internet censorship features behind a technical overhaul of the TCP/IP protocol stack.
In short, an attempt by the Chinese government to export and impose its autocratic views on the rest of the Internet and its infrastructure. Especially since several countries such as Iran, Russia and Saudi Arabia have given their support.
On its blog, the Regional Internet Registry for Europe, West Asia and the former USSR, RIPE NCC, has officially spoken out against China's new IP proposal.
Marco Hogewoning, acting director of public policy and Internet governance at RIPE NCC, says "Do we need New IP? I don't think we do. [...] Although there are some technical challenges with the current Internet model, I don't think we need a new architecture to solve them."
Any attempt to overhaul Internet protocols should be left to the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) and not the ITU, where political influence is more important than technically sound arguments, he said. RIPE is also concerned about the desire to change the decentralized nature of the Internet.
The organization expressed its concerns in a paper sent to the ITU in February this year: "RIPE NCC is deeply concerned about what has been proposed here.[...] We are particularly concerned that this proposal represents an opportunity to move away from the traditional 'bottom-up' decision-making model. We also believe that the technical justification presented is flawed and find the alternative designs suggested to be both unrealistic and unproven".
With the new proposal due to enter the test phase in 2021, Hogewoning urges national Internet governance organizations to contact local decision-makers and recommend voting against it as well as a vote at a later date.
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Source : ZDNet