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Sonic.net's CEO On Why ISPs Should Only Keep User Logs Two Weeks

timothy posted more than 2 years ago | from the privacy-has-value dept.

Privacy 190

Sparrowvsrevolution writes "Dane Jasper's tiny Internet service provider Sonic.net briefly took the national spotlight last October, when it contested a Department of Justice order that it secretly hand over the data of privacy activist and WikiLeaks associate Jacob Appelbaum. But Sonic.net has actually been quietly implementing a much more fundamental privacy measure: For the past eighteen months it's only kept logs of user data for two weeks before deletion, compared with 18 to 36 months at Verizon, AT&T, Comcast, Time Warner and other ISPs. In a lengthy Q&A, he explains how he came to the decision to limit logging after a series of shakedowns by copyright lawyers attempting to embarrass users who had downloaded porn films, and he argues that it's time all ISPs adopt the two-week rule."

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excellent good sense (5, Insightful)

waterbear (190559) | more than 2 years ago | (#40436775)

excellent good sense, what more can one say?

-wb-

Re:excellent good sense (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40437001)

bring back dynamically assigned IP addresses too.. then I'm sold.

Re:excellent good sense (1, Troll)

Pseudonym Authority (1591027) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437285)

I concur. Do you know how hard it is to evade bans with a static IP address? And with all the idiotic, irrelevant, asinine garbage that I am compelled by autism to post, these $3/m VPSes are starting to cost a lot!

Re:excellent good sense (1, Insightful)

Thanshin (1188877) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437321)

Well, they could have been a tiny bit more sincere: "he argues that it's time all ISPs adopt the two-week rule." could be replaced by: "he argues that he'd like all consumers to adopt ISPs that apply the two-week rule."

We might consider starting to treat CEOs as the people at the top of a system that works by extracting from people the maximum amount of money.

I'm happy when profit pushes a CEO in the same direction as morality, but let's not mix both. The wind isn't kind when it pushes you to safety and unkind when it pushes you to your death.

If you want to congratulate someone, congratulate those who teach the public to vote that "two week rule" with their money. Congratulate those who teach because they believe knowledge gives freedom.

Duopoly (4, Insightful)

tepples (727027) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437389)

If you want to congratulate someone, congratulate those who teach the public to vote that "two week rule" with their money.

If neither the local cable company nor the local DSL company observes the two-week rule, should people vote with their feet and move to a different city? The consensus last time I asked [slashdot.org] was that moving is not practical.

Re:excellent good sense (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40437461)

Dane's a good guy. I had a creative writing class with him 15 years ago. He chooses to pay his people well AND provide less expensive service to his customers. I'm sure there's not much left over for him.

have you checked sonic.net's prices?

Re:excellent good sense (3, Insightful)

Joce640k (829181) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437577)

The Police will soon have a list of all the people who changed ISP after this announcement. People who demand privacy obviously have something to hide.

Re:excellent good sense (4, Funny)

SydShamino (547793) | more than 2 years ago | (#40438001)

The Police will soon have a list of all the people who changed ISP after this announcement. People who demand privacy obviously have something to hide.

What does an 80s rock band have to do with this? Are they suing downloaders?

Re:excellent good sense (-1, Troll)

citizenr (871508) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437329)

Terrible business sense. Users are not customers anymore. Today big data is the commodity. You can (and should) monetize your logs. Otherwise you are a terrible CEO.

Watch this for example.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MzS83BGdWco [youtube.com]

Re:excellent good sense (1)

game kid (805301) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437513)

You'd be a terrible CEO to the marketing team and shareholders, but fuck the marketing team and shareholders.

Shocking! (5, Insightful)

Runaway1956 (1322357) | more than 2 years ago | (#40436795)

It is truly shocking that some people resist the idea of the police state! If for your own good! Think of the children! The only people with anything to hide are terrorists and criminals!

Face it, folks. The bottom line is, our governments and the corporations that control them, want a police state. They are afraid of freedom, and they will go to any lengths to limit freedom. Badmouthing the president is cause for the Secret Service to put a bullseye on you, and your communications channels. Exposing fraud in the corporate world is reason to haul your ass through the court system, and to take everything you own, along with everything that you might ever hope to own. And, cheating an author out of a dollar of royalties? Phht - ten years in prison sounds about right - to the police state, anyway.

Re:Shocking! (4, Funny)

myowntrueself (607117) | more than 2 years ago | (#40436859)

It is truly shocking that some people resist the idea of the police state! If for your own good! Think of the children! The only people with anything to hide are terrorists and criminals!

Face it, folks. The bottom line is, our governments and the corporations that control them, want a police state. They are afraid of freedom, and they will go to any lengths to limit freedom. Badmouthing the president is cause for the Secret Service to put a bullseye on you, and your communications channels. Exposing fraud in the corporate world is reason to haul your ass through the court system, and to take everything you own, along with everything that you might ever hope to own. And, cheating an author out of a dollar of royalties? Phht - ten years in prison sounds about right - to the police state, anyway.

Right. So basically, you are saying that you have something to hide?

Re:Shocking! (3, Insightful)

serviscope_minor (664417) | more than 2 years ago | (#40436917)

So basically, you are saying that you have something to hide?

I invite anyone who claims otherwise to install a permanently on webcam in their bedroom so we can get some nice videos of their pet sheep.

Re:Shocking! (5, Insightful)

Runaway1956 (1322357) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437005)

Basically - I have things that I hide. I share some strange humor with some buddies. I share intimate moments with other people. I share some silly moments with other people. My life is sort of compartmentalized - as most people's lives are. The people I ride bikes with would see some of my silly moments with little kids in a way that I might not appreciate. And, the females with whom I am intimate wouldn't appreciate having tales spread around town. Think about it. Your parents, your siblings, your buddies, your kids, nieces and nephews, and your workmates aren't interchangeable, are they?

As for other important matters - perhaps I am working to have a sick criminal representative exposed, impeached, and run out of Washington. Do you think that representative should be empowered to put me under surveillance, with the goal of neutralizing me through blackmail, or murder, or some bogus judicial action?

Show me a person with nothing to hide, and I'll show you a moron without a life. Retards in institutions have nothing to hide, after all. Are you an institutionalized moron?

Re:Shocking! (4, Funny)

RyuuzakiTetsuya (195424) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437039)

So you're deeply ashamed of who you are and don't have courage or the conviction to own up to your life?

For a second there I thought you were some sort of dissident in a third world nation or corporate whistleblower.

Re:Shocking! (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40437075)

So you're deeply ashamed of who you are and don't have courage or the conviction to own up to your life?

Most people simply desire privacy. It often has nothing to do with being "ashamed." That can be one (valid) concern, but that needn't be the answer.

Would you please allow me to install security cameras in every single room in your house? If not, why? Are you "deeply ashamed" of your life?

Re:Shocking! (1)

RyuuzakiTetsuya (195424) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437119)

Sure. I've got nothin' to hide. But I do have a lot to be deeply ashamed of.

But that's not my point. My point was that he's arguing from an extremely privileged point of view.

He's saying that he's paranoid that Government or corporate business interests will out his proclivities if they ever catch wind and should he ever cross their path.

It's not good, but it's not horrible either. What's going on isn't Big Brother snooping in on your every little detail.

Re:Shocking! (4, Insightful)

cheekyjohnson (1873388) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437151)

But I do have a lot to be deeply ashamed of.

You've got plenty to hide, then.

It's not good, but it's not horrible either. What's going on isn't Big Brother snooping in on your every little detail.

It would be quite impossible for them to do that to more than a minuscule portion of the population. But it's possible if they the limit it to a few people. I'd rather not have anyone be spied on, even if that someone isn't myself.

Re:Shocking! (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40437799)

"What's going on isn't Big Brother snooping in on your every little detail."

That statement is less true with every passing minute

Re:Shocking! (-1, Troll)

Grishnakh (216268) | more than 2 years ago | (#40438077)

You don't need privacy. If you're not willing to show the public every aspect of your life, then you're surely a terrorist or a criminal. We need to ban privacy for the good of the children, and to keep us all safe from terrorists!

Re:Shocking! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40437107)

No, he's just a somewhat more complex person than you are.

It's easy for worthless people not to care about privacy,

Re:Shocking! (3)

Runaway1956 (1322357) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437125)

Two AC's have answered already, at least as well as I could have answered.

Am I ashamed of - ohhhh - let's say, the dark humor I shared with shipmates? Of course not. Would I share that same humor with a preacher? My wife? Some schoolkids? No way. It would be entirely out of context, and none of those people are likely to understand the context.

One of my sons has matured in a fashion, where he seems to appreciate some of that dark humor. One, of three.

Re:Shocking! (5, Insightful)

Inda (580031) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437307)

There are people who are happy to share their lives. There are people who are not happy to share their lives.

I propose we call these people extroverts and introverts.

Re:Shocking! (1)

Runaway1956 (1322357) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437381)

Great post - deserves to be modded up, even if it isn't very "geeky" or "nerdish". And, yes, I'm something of an introvert. ;^)

Re:Shocking! (5, Insightful)

LordLucless (582312) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437771)

Please post the names, addresses and photographs of every woman you've had sexual relations with. Publish your own home address, phone number, social security number and credit card details. Post a list of every digital purchase you've made, every website you've visited.

Failure to do so reveals you for the hypocrite you are. Yes, people have things to hide. No, things people are hiding aren't necessarily bad, or any of your freaking business.

Re:Shocking! (1)

mooingyak (720677) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437857)

A Cutlass Supreme is a regular Cutlass with tomatoes and sour cream shoved into the transaxle.

I'll get hit with offtopic for this, but that's awesome. Although my first thought was more along the lines of lettuce, tomato, french fries, and/or onion rings.

Re:Shocking! (1)

silentcoder (1241496) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437113)

> And, the females with whom I am intimate

The what you are what with ? Oh... I get it. Good one, you almost had me for a second there.

Re:Shocking! (1)

nhat11 (1608159) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437237)

I have things I hide but if someone founds out, it's cool whatever, I can talk about it. I don't really care in the end as long as they don't impede my life to continue doing it. Unless you killed someone or do something harmful, I don't see what you're so ashamed off besides that tinfoil hat of yours, lol.

Re:Shocking! (2)

cheekyjohnson (1873388) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437301)

Unless you killed someone or do something harmful, I don't see what you're so ashamed off besides that tinfoil hat of yours, lol.

The fact that different people have varying degrees of desire to protect their privacy doesn't mean that they're criminals (or doing something "wrong"). And since the government decides who the criminals are, it probably isn't an intelligent decision to allow them to spy on its own citizens with no oversight.

Re:Shocking! (1)

RivenAleem (1590553) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437319)

Think about it. Your parents, your siblings, your buddies, your kids, nieces and nephews, and your workmates aren't interchangeable, are they?

Where can I send the bill for 1 gallon of mental bleach?

Re:Shocking! (1)

Runaway1956 (1322357) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437407)

The White House will be happy to cover this trivial cost. Just tell Barack that I said it was alright.

Re:Shocking! (2)

Pseudonym Authority (1591027) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437305)

I invite anyone who claims otherwise to install a permanently on webcam in their bedroom so we can get some nice videos of their pet sheep.

You scoff, but people do it. Have a look at some of them [pastebin.com] , it can get kinda creepy.

Re:Shocking! (5, Insightful)

awrowe (1110817) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437209)

This is such a bullshit argument! It is not necessary to have something to hide to desire privacy. Government is there to facilitate lawful activity by its citizens, not to oversee every aspect of a citizen's activities. Innocence before proven guilt is the doctrine here. Trotting out the "nothing to fear, nothing to hide" argument just makes you part of the problem.

Re:Shocking! (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40437255)

Right. So basically, you are saying that you have something to hide?

Even the police tells me (in Dutch) [politie.nl] I have something to hide. They warn against putting vacation plans on Facebook, because burglars read Facebook too. Not the same as hiding things from the police, of course, but by giving this advise they acknowledge that people have perfectly valid reasons to hide perfectly innocent things from others.

Re:Shocking! (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40437361)

As a human being [wikipedia.org] , I have many things I'd like to hide. Human's are complex, social creatures and being able to keep secrets is important to our sanity. Please "think of the humans" the next time you discuss privacy of web denizens.

Why Privacy? (5, Insightful)

Aragorn DeLunar (311860) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437515)

Because a government that can search any person at any time can falsely incriminate anyone, and motives for doing so are abundantly self-evident.

"During a routine anti-terrorism sweep, civil liberties activist John Doe was found to be in possession of methamphetamine, child pornography, explosive-making material, and pirated ABBA songs. He was immediately taken into custody and is being held at an undisclosed location for the public's safety..."

Right now we have an important check in the form of a search warrant. Before searching me, a law enforcement agent must demonstrate to a judge probable cause that I have committed, or will commit, a crime. It's not perfect, and there are notable loopholes, but at least there is some documentation and accountability.

Re:Shocking! (1)

RyuuzakiTetsuya (195424) | more than 2 years ago | (#40436983)

[citation needed]

Seriously? Can you back any of that up?

Re:Shocking! (2)

Runaway1956 (1322357) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437015)

Patriot Act
NDAA
ACTA
NPP

That should be enough for starters. If you need more, just post back, and I'll try to get a longer list put together for you.

Re:Shocking! (1)

RyuuzakiTetsuya (195424) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437033)

Has anyone actually been jailed or snooped on for talking smack about Obama?

Re:Shocking! (2)

JosKarith (757063) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437077)

Keep discussing the subject and find out, Citizen...

Re:Shocking! (1)

cheekyjohnson (1873388) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437083)

Who knows? With the government's blatant disregard for the constitution, they don't need to answer to anyone.

Re:Shocking! (0)

RyuuzakiTetsuya (195424) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437091)

So basically you have no answer and the lack of evidence is more evidence!? CONSPIRACY!

Re:Shocking! (1)

cheekyjohnson (1873388) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437129)

I never claimed to have a precise answer, now did I? I just hinted at the dangers of a government that violates its own laws.

Re:Shocking! (-1, Troll)

RyuuzakiTetsuya (195424) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437155)

So you have innuendo instead of facts? Suspicions rather than evidence?

Jesus christ you're a looney.

Re:Shocking! (2)

cheekyjohnson (1873388) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437189)

Someone is a "looney" for suggesting that a government that disregards its own laws is quite possibly a government you don't want to have? I'd say that's a strange definition of "looney" you have there. I believe I simply have a healthy distrust of people with extraordinary power and limited oversight. I can't see why anyone wouldn't.

1. Don't want hypocrites; 2. U.S. is hypocrites (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437447)

Someone is a "looney" for suggesting that a government that disregards its own laws is quite possibly a government you don't want to have?

Someone's a "looney" for suggesting without evidence that the United States Government in particular has become such a government. There are two statements here: "I don't want to live under hypocrisy" and "the United States Government is such a hypocrisy". You insinuated the latter when you said "the government's blatant disregard", not merely "a government's blatant disregard".

Re:1. Don't want hypocrites; 2. U.S. is hypocrites (1)

cheekyjohnson (1873388) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437509)

Someone's a "looney" for suggesting without evidence that the United States Government in particular has become such a government.

The one above already listed a few pieces of evidence (which is all it takes, really). Although he neglected to mention things such as the TSA or free speech zones. I thought it was plainly clear that I was referring to those things and that it needn't be said again in order to be understood.

Re:1. Don't want hypocrites; 2. U.S. is hypocrites (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40437815)

Youre completely blind if you think that the US Gov is not such a hypocrisy

Re:Shocking! (4, Insightful)

Runaway1956 (1322357) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437115)

Jailed? Not that I'm aware of. Snooped on? Yes - let me find at least two links to stories that come to mind - - -

http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/politics/2012/04/secret-service-investigates-ted-nugent-remarks-on-obama/ [go.com]

http://www.usatoday.com/news/politics/story/2012-03-23/louisiana-comment-obama/53741346/1 [usatoday.com]

http://blogs.browardpalmbeach.com/pulp/2012/06/terry_jones_hangs_obama.php [browardpalmbeach.com]

http://gawker.com/5498597/obama-death-tweeter-being-investigated-by-secret-service [gawker.com]

That should be enough, I would think. I was looking for a couple others - one was a crusty old redneck, the other some black guy from a southern city, each of who made similar comments to those linked to above.

Before you ask - I think the Secret Service is basically doing the job they are supposed to do, in each of these stories. But - there is a very thin line between doing their job properly, and becoming something like the KGB or the Stazi. Very thin line, indeed. Recent events have shown that the Secret Service is NOT incorruptible. It is improbable, but possible, that the SS could be turned into a tool of the administration to round up people like Ted Nugent, and to "silence" them, in whatever manner. Ted would have to be handled very carefully. Some redneck from Backwoods, Nowhere could just be snuffed, and his family told that he "resisted arrest".

"Snooped on" is common, these days. No less common than it was during the McCarthy days. Less public than in the McCarthy days, but just as common.

Re:Shocking! (0)

RyuuzakiTetsuya (195424) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437141)

Because that's totally with out precedent. [wikipedia.org]

If you're right, then why hasn't the WND been occupied by marines and it's servers taken to the FBI for forensic analysis?

Re:Shocking! (4, Insightful)

Runaway1956 (1322357) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437347)

What do you mean, "If you're right"? Perhaps you misread my post. I said that corrupting the SS into a political tool is unlikely - but possible. You find that to be incorrect, in some way?

Or, are you just arguing for the sake of argument?

Anytime a person or collection of people holds power, there is potential for abuse. The sheep don't give it any thought, and certainly don't worry about it. Responsible men and women do think about it - and they start worrying when signs indicate that abuse is growing more likely.

Today, the potential for abuse is considerably higher than it was when I was a kid. McCarthy ruined careers and reputations. Today's potential abuses can end freedom, and possibly even lives.

Re:Shocking! (1)

azalin (67640) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437391)

Before you ask - I think the Secret Service is basically doing the job they are supposed to do, in each of these stories. But - there is a very thin line between doing their job properly, and becoming something like the KGB or the Stazi. Very thin line, indeed. Recent events have shown that the Secret Service is NOT incorruptible. It is improbable, but possible, that the SS could be turned into a tool of the administration to round up people like Ted Nugent, and to "silence" them, in whatever manner.

I'm not sure you intended the double meaning you introduced by shortening the Secret Service to the same two letters an other prominent organization used in their insignia.
PS: oh and the others where called "Stasi" - short for "Staatssicherheit" (state security). This has interestingly the same meaning as the letters "G" and "B" where as K stands for "committee".

Re:Shocking! (1)

Runaway1956 (1322357) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437477)

After I hit the submit button, I realized what I had done. Freudian slip? I don't know. I don't think I intended that "SS" in the manner you have pointed out.

Re:Shocking! (1)

Shivetya (243324) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437085)

your slightly mixed up about who controls who.

The political class controls all, the corporate class merely has sufficient money to pay the required bribes to maintain a false sense of freedom.

Re:Shocking! (0)

Jawnn (445279) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437773)

Badmouthing the president is cause for the Secret Service to put a bullseye on you, and your communications channels.

Bullshit. Please cite your source for this sensational claim or STFU, m'kay? And no, making threats, overt or veiled, is not the same thing as "badmouthing" the president.

Props to him (3, Interesting)

netwarerip (2221204) | more than 2 years ago | (#40436807)

Kudos for having the balls to do this in the face of (gov't) adversity. Too bad it's unlikely for the big ISPs to do the same. They rely too much on gov't help/assistance/looking-the-other-way to want to rock the boat.

Re:Props to him (2)

DigiShaman (671371) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437835)

If cutting back on 2 weeks worth of logging saves them money in server and backup infrastructure costs, why not? To what advantage does 1 year worth of logging give them? Unless they're reselling this information as marketing stats, I honestly don't know.

Cool! I wish ISPs could do that here (5, Informative)

Arancaytar (966377) | more than 2 years ago | (#40436813)

European law forces ISPs to retain traffic data for half a year. Germany is the only state currently refusing to implement the law, but I don't have any illusions that this will last.

Re:Cool! I wish ISPs could do that here (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40436865)

The Data Retention Directive says 6 to 24 months with the 24 months as a maximum. I believe the UK gov were falling over themselves to implement the maximum. I have a vague recollection that it was possible to avoid the retention requirement if you were a small ISP though...

Re:Cool! I wish ISPs could do that here (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40437699)

Small ISP here. When I spoke to the Home Office at the time they stated the directive applied only *after* they had expressed interest, i.e. up to that point as a small ISP we need not worry about keeping data.

Re:Cool! I wish ISPs could do that here (2)

SniperJoe (1984152) | more than 2 years ago | (#40436969)

I wonder if their refusal is grounded in the knowledge of what it is like to live under a police state. If that is the case, perhaps it can give us hope that the pendulum will swing in the other direction for the more draconian governments out there.

Re:Cool! I wish ISPs could do that here (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40437181)

Sorry to squash your hopes, but it's a little more complicated. Germany supported the EU directive which it now refuses to implement. It had implemented it as well, but the Federal Constitutional Court (Bundesverfassungsgericht) found the implementation to be unconstitutional. There is currently strong opposition among the public to a new implementation that the Interior Ministers are pushing, and this has fueled the rise of the Pirate Party, but inside the government, the liberal Justice Minister (Mrs Leutheusser-Schnarrenberger) is about the only remaining obstacle to data retention. When (not if) they push it through, it will be brought before the Federal Constitutional Court again, where it may pass if they just word it right.

Re:Cool! I wish ISPs could do that here (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40437031)

Na, The discussion is only about the law itself, major German ISPs already store the data for 6 months.

The only thing this will achieve (3, Insightful)

dnaumov (453672) | more than 2 years ago | (#40436827)

Is multi-year log and data retention required by law, as it already is in the EU.

Re:The only thing this will achieve (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40436873)

Is multi-year log and data retention required by law, as it already is in the EU.

And if companies refuses to do business in the EU because they can't comply with this law I am pretty sure that that particular law will be adjusted.

Re:The only thing this will achieve (1)

SuricouRaven (1897204) | more than 2 years ago | (#40436891)

If those companies don't, someone else will. The EU isn't just some small town with one corner shop.

Re:The only thing this will achieve (2)

dnaumov (453672) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437649)

Is multi-year log and data retention required by law, as it already is in the EU.

And if companies refuses to do business in the EU because they can't comply with this law I am pretty sure that that particular law will be adjusted.

You didn't get the point. Right now, if you are an ISP in EU, you keep logs for 2 years. As mandated by EU laws.
The ISP behaviour described in the TFA will (as sad as it is) only lead to similar legislation being introduced in the US.

Re:The only thing this will achieve (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40436893)

I understand your stance, but I would be a bit more optimistic. EU laws where passed before the whole ACTA mess opened people's eyes (for a while, people tend to have quite short-term memory for political matters). If US tried to pass such a law now or in the forthcoming years, I hope people would react just as they did during the anti-ACTA protests.

If they all done it at the same time (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40436829)

Nobody can do shit about it. It would require government intervention, which in turn would cause such a huge amount of notice from even your average person since the media would blow it up as well.

Do it. It is about time the normals know what is happening. Sick of ignorance.

Give it a few months... (5, Insightful)

s0litaire (1205168) | more than 2 years ago | (#40436851)

And if more ISP's jump on the 2-week "band-waggon" you'll quickly see one of the next "Defence Appropriations Bill" (or something like that) have a little addition sneaked in by someone in Homeland Security to legally require ISP's to hold 12 months of Logs/Emails.

Just like what's happening in the UK...

Re:Give it a few months... (3, Informative)

oobayly (1056050) | more than 2 years ago | (#40436885)

Oh no, they don't tag things onto bills in the UK, they just plough ahead and write new legislation while ignoring experts, the industry and most importantly, public opinion. Politicians over here don't give a shit about how stupid their legislation makes them - you could stick a red rosette on a pig and it would get elected in Birmingham. Likewise, you could stick a blue rosette on a fox (the one you hunt, not the one you eye up in the pub) in my constituency and it'd get elected.

Re:Give it a few months... (1)

mister_dave (1613441) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437027)

The UK data retension legislation on this is set at the EU level [statewatch.org] .

Re:Give it a few months... (1)

tomtomtom (580791) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437713)

Yes but it was policy laundered to some extent. It was originally effectively a UK policy, but politicians thought they needed the cover of EU rules to be able to sell it to the public.

Re:Give it a few months... (1)

guru42101 (851700) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437635)

I haven't read into this, I wonder how detailed the law is about the retention. Is it simply that you must retain the logs that you do? Or, does it define exactly what you are required to log? If it is the latter then I'm surprised some ISPs don't turn off logging all together.

Re:Give it a few months... (2)

WrongSizeGlass (838941) | more than 2 years ago | (#40436937)

And if more ISP's jump on the 2-week "band-waggon" you'll quickly see one of the next "Defence Appropriations Bill" (or something like that) have a little addition sneaked in by someone in Homeland Security to legally require ISP's to hold 12 months of Logs/Emails.

If the US passes a bill requiring ISP's to retain the data it would mean that their data (US Congress) would also be retained and possibly be subject to FOIA requests. I doubt that many in Washington DC want their data held for any longer than it takes to complete the http request.

Re:Give it a few months... (4, Interesting)

QQBoss (2527196) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437143)

If the US passes a bill requiring ISP's to retain the data it would mean that their data (US Congress) would also be retained and possibly be subject to FOIA requests. I doubt that many in Washington DC want their data held for any longer than it takes to complete the http request.

Congress commonly exempts itself from complying with laws, since prosecutable offenses are for the little people usually.

In 1994/5, the Republican-led (under Newt Gingrich) Congress changed that somewhat by passing the Congressional Accountability Act [compliance.gov] , but once the Republicans were out of power the Democrats resumed business as usual.

To be fair, though, the Republicans probably would have done the same, if only a little slower, and no one made any moves to every fix up the insider trading [cbsnews.com] issues back then, either. And Congress has always been exempt from FOIA requests [foxnews.com] and other petty laws that as an employer I could have been heavily fined for if I ignored.

The ISPs should be careful (4, Interesting)

MikeRT (947531) | more than 2 years ago | (#40436869)

18-36 months for user activity logs? Really? If they do that voluntarily, they have no credible argument from a cost perspective to ever say "no" to the government. None. Period. The amount of data they're freely taking on there is so high that the government can easily justify telling them that they must warehouse all activity, all users (past and present) indefinitely at their cost.

I simply cannot believe the bean counters are ok with this.

Re:The ISPs should be careful (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40437277)

There is nothing "free" about it. For many ISP's, that logging is a valuable commodity to sell for targeted advertising.

Re:The ISPs should be careful (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40437309)

And these ISPs will get to charge higher rates when the big boys go to the regulatory boards and say "Look at how much this will cost us." Let's not be foolish here. The ISPs aren't going to lose a dime in profit and the government will back them up on it.

Re:The ISPs should be careful (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40437967)

I simply cannot believe the bean counters are ok with this.

No kidding! That is a whole lot of a data being kept, which equals massive organized storage, power to run and cool, and people to maintain and access when necessary. I guess it's cheaper to cap the end user bandwidth and hold off on infrastructure upgrades for 3 quarters, than cut your logging capabilities to 2 weeks and tell the Gov. to fly a kite.

Better than the others, but... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40436879)

Two weeks is better than the alternatives, but I'd still much rather they didn't keep logs at all. Unless there's some pressing technical reason to keep them...?

Re:Better than the others, but... (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40436907)

Two weeks is sufficient time for ISPs to be able to do things like tracking down abuse and perform troubleshooting/tech support but short enough that a government bureaucracy and/or a gaggle of RIAA/MPAA lawyers would likely not be able to prepare and serve out a search warrant or subpoena in time.

Re:Better than the others, but... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40437721)

Plenty of pressing technical reason, from troubleshooting email problems ("I sent an email but it didn't arrive"), indentifying hacking attemps ("looks like SQL injection"), etc etc. If this needs explaining, GET OFF MY INTERNETS :)

This is a stand on government efficiency (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40436905)

The main reason to pick 2 weeks, is because he brilliantly knows that government cannot turn on a dime that quickly.

Hack? (2)

dskoll (99328) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437175)

As far as I can read (which is not too far... I didn't dig deeply), the European directive doesn't specify that the data has to be stored electronically. All it says regarding storage requirements is: Member States shall ensure that the data specified in Article 5 are retained in accordance with this Directive in such a way that the data retained and any other necessary information relating to such data can be transmitted upon request to the competent authorities without undue delay.

So why not spool your old logs onto microfiche? And when you get a demand for logs, hand over all the films and say "Go nuts!"

Re:Hack? (1)

azalin (67640) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437453)

Do you really think the government ever threw those out just because their are ancient or cumbersome? I'm pretty sure the one place you will find several experienced fiche readers/operators is in some government organization.

Re:Hack? (2)

Jawnn (445279) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437907)

Whoosh!
Think harder... Maybe along the lines of "...the manpower required..." to search a microfiche copy of an ISP's logs.

Yet another thing messed up by piracy (2)

davide marney (231845) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437457)

If you read all the way to the end, there's a great question about whether ISPs ought to market the privacy features of their VPN/Proxy solutions, and his response is that this kind of "privacy" is really just a cover for piracy. If you were a Chinese dissident, you'd be using something like Tor, not a private-label VPN. So, he cannot even market his policy of short-term logs, because he doesn't want to become a magnet for pirates. I'm really beginning to hate piracy. It has messed up so many things.

Actually, it's time... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40437475)

...for people to stop pirating and generally being stupid. Remember, laws are created when people do stupid stuff.

The libraries sucessfully fight this all the time (5, Interesting)

davecb (6526) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437489)

Someone always want to be able to ask if a particular person has read "Steal This Book", or "How to Build an Atom Bomb". Librarians get that kind of demand all the time, and have successfully fought it at the personal and also at the technical level.

I once worked on library software, and it was a prerequisite in the business that, as soon as a book was returned or the non-return fine was paid, the record that "user X borrowed book Y" was deleted, and a counter of completed transaction was incremented. The latter was necessary for funding and statistical purposes.

This was a norm because the library community actively went out and found a number of states, Germany among them, that protected library patrons from snooping without a warrant. They then made that know to their software suppliers. As the software had to be legal in all the countries where it was to be sold, it was written to meet the highest legal standards, which included the highest privacy standards.

If a legitimate investigation needed to track a library patron's reading, and the investigator could convince a judge, then the library could put a watch on a patron in exchange for a warrant. The watch could not start in the past, of course, but a daily sql query could find out the books a patron currently had out.

There is at least one DHCP program around, written by an ex-librarian, that behaves just this way...

--dave

I've Got Nothing to Hide (4, Informative)

chill (34294) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437503)

For those who argue that they have nothing to hide, I suggest they read Daniel J. Solove's "I've Got Nothing to Hide and Other Misunderstandings of Privacy" [ssrn.com] for a succinct explanation of the issues.

For those with more detail-oriented interests, I suggest picking up a couple of his books on the issue of Privacy. A partial list can be found at his website [gwu.edu] .

Summary links to page two of the article (2)

amaupin (721551) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437531)

Summary links to page two of the article.

page one [forbes.com]

Why keep any logs? (1)

asifyoucare (302582) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437591)

Why would an ISP need to log ANY user activity? I deduce there are reasons, from the fact that Sonic mulled the issue but still decided to keep any logs at all, but damned if I know what those reasons might be.

Re:Why keep any logs? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40437777)

Why would an ISP need to log ANY user activity? I deduce there are reasons, from the fact that Sonic mulled the issue but still decided to keep any logs at all, but damned if I know what those reasons might be.

So they have some idea of the damage done by the asshat who got his mail account phished, perhaps? Or the other asshat whose bot-infested machine has been spewing stuff out through their SMTP relays? Or so they have figures they can use as a basis for limiting outbound mail for users to minimise the damage done in both those situations? Or so they have some idea of which user was on which IP address on which date, so when abuse complaints come in they have some idea of whose head they need to nail to the coffee table? They all seem like reasonable reasons to me.

Re:Why keep any logs? (1)

asifyoucare (302582) | more than 2 years ago | (#40437973)

Some good points, but isn't the ISP just asking for pain in keeping logs beyond an hour or two? That hour or two is more than enough to check for operational issues. Why should an ISP be the policeman for everyone's internet behavior, except for simple measure like egress filtering? What's the point of logging botnet activity if you're not going to block it, and what's the point of logging (absent) botnet activity if you do block it?

I know where I work, we log HEAPS of stuff, but very rarely look at it. What are you going to do with total of more than 100G logs daily on many different servers. [jaded] Yeah, I know, SIEM and $$$ for products that work no better than a few simple scripts.[/jaded]

Re:Why keep any logs? (1)

jonwil (467024) | more than 2 years ago | (#40438303)

They need to keep logs so that when the FBI goes to them and says "we are investigating a bomb threat and it was sent by one of your customers" or whatever, they have enough logs to find the bad guy.

Rural ISP's (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40437885)

I'm a network analyst for a Rual ISP, and we keep DHCP logs for 1 month, pending no DMCA request. If we do receive a DMCA request we look up the customer's DHCP records, and record a separate log containing only that customers DHCP records; flushing the remaining logs.

Unlike larger ISP's, we don't turn over anything unless it's a court ordered.

Oh, and we don't forward on those drive-by copyright infringement notices from copyrightsettlements.com, but we do retain them for legal reasons, but nothing emailed to us is considered a valid request unless it is snail mailed via certified mail.

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