RIPE NCC Launches Internet Resource Certification Service
Amsterdam, 5th January 2011 – The RIPE NCC, the not-for-profit organisation that supports the infrastructure of the Internet, today makes its resource certification service available to members, as part of its aim to ensure the long-term stability of Internet routing. As of 3rd January 2011, anyone requesting IP addresses or autonomous system (AS) numbers from the RIPE NCC will have the option of generating a "resource certificate", an electronic document that proves that a particular Internet resource has been officially registered by the RIPE NCC.
The digital verification provided by resource certification will help secure Internet routing by facilitating automated checking of resource registration information in a dependable, transparent and standardised way. Routing errors caused by mis-announcements of IP address prefixes can have a significant impact on the Internet, and cause entire networks can become unreachable. For example, in 2008, an error by Pakistan Telecom resulted in the hijacking of YouTube traffic on a global scale. Similarly, in April 2010, China Telecom redirected 15% of the world's Internet traffic to Chinese servers.
Andrew de La Haye, chief operations officer at the RIPE NCC, explains: "The RIPE NCC is committed to working with all Internet stakeholders to make the Internet a safe and secure space. As the unallocated pool of IPv4 addresses runs out, the need for reliable registration will be greater than ever, with a greater incentive for illegitimate operators to use addresses that are not registered to them. A lack of available, unused IPv4 addresses may also see people wishing to sell or trade their IPv4 address holdings – in such cases, it will be vital to be able to verify the legitimate registrant of those resources.
“Resource certification will prevent route hacking and help ensure that any transfers of address space are reliable and secure because the recipient can be certain that the resources have been legitimately allocated or assigned by an RIR.”
Resource certification is a system based on globally accepted and well-known Public Key Infrastructure (PKI) principles. All of the Regional Internet Registries (RIRs) have committed to deploying certification in their respective regions.
The RIPE NCC will initially offer its resource certification service with a limited feature set; this will be expanded over time, as the system evolves. Router manufacturers are also planning to incorporate resource certification into their products, meaning that route verification and filtering will be able to be done in the hardware itself.
About the RIPE NCC
Founded in 1992, the RIPE NCC is an independent, not-for-profit membership organisation that supports the infrastructure of the Internet. The most prominent activity of the RIPE NCC is to act as a Regional Internet Registry (RIR) providing global Internet resources and related services to a current membershi