Parties concerned that SOPA, the Stop Online Piracy Act – as currently drafted - is likely to do more harm than good received indirect support from a slightly unexpected quarter. Declan McCullagh reports for CNET that Daniel E. Lundgren, chairman of the Committee on Homeland Security's Sub-Committee on Cybersecurity, Infrastructure Protection, and Security Technologies, has stated that:
An "unintended consequence" of the Stop Online Piracy Act, or SOPA, would be to "undercut the real effort that would practically help us secure the Internet" through DNSSEC…
SOPA's credibility was, if not actively damaged, not particularly helped when it turned out that none of the witnesses called to testify to the SOPA hearing was prepared to describe themselves as qualified to comment on the Domain Naming System or DNSSEC. Not even, it seems, the lobbyist for the Motion Picture Association of America, which has previously claimed that "DNS filtering is not a threat to legal websites implementing DNSSEC."
Lundgren's comment is only a fraction of what the EFF describes as An Explosion of Opposition to the Internet Blacklist Bill
I'd say it was rather a slow-moving explosion, but momentum has certainly picked up in the last week or so, as the EFFarticle indicates. Time to go back to the drawing board, surely? Clearly, the House Judiciary Committee needs to take authoritative, neutral technical advice on the mechanics and implications of DNS filtering.
David Harley CITP FBCS CISSP
ESET Senior Research Fellow
Author David Harley, ESET