RIPE Meeting: 65
Working Group: ENUM
Status: Draft
Revision Number: 1


Thursday, 27 September 2012, 16:00-17:30
Okura Hotel, Amsterdam, the Netherlands
Co-chairs: Niall O’Reilly, Carsten Schiefner
Scribe: Fergal Cunningham
Chat Monitor: Athina Fragkouli

A: Administrivia

ENUM Working Group Chair Niall O’Reilly opened the meeting at 16:06, welcomed attendees and introduced his co-chair, Carsten Schiefner.

There were no additional agenda items to be added.

B: Minutes of previous meeting

The minutes from RIPE 64 were approved.

C: Review Action List

ENUM-AP-63.1 – [OPEN] Denesh Bhabuta, Peter Szegedi: Contact enum operators “brainstorming among ENUM operators”

Niall said that this action would be postponed until the RIPE 66 Meeting in Dublin.

D: Main presentations

• D.1: “Making ENUM useful before it establishes critical mass” – Rick van Rein

The presentation is available at:

Niall said that from his experience with the ENUM trial in Ireland and other countries, the difficulty with making it lightweight is that phone numbers are not identifiers quite like others. He said phone numbers are more formal than email addresses or Skype identifiers because they have to be granted by a Telco and they have to be validated every so often. He said this was the key obstacle to adoption.

Rick said there are Telcos that allow you to register a number from a series, and he planned to do something like this with FREEnum. He said this aspect was becoming easier in the Netherlands. He added that the need to regularly validate is related to the fact that Telcos do not report back when a number is disconnected, and he said that this should be compulsory.

Niall said if you wanted to compel the Telcos to do anything at all then the regulator would need to back you, and this could be quite a battle.

Carsten asked if he would need a contract for phone services if he was to get that number from the allocation of a Telco operator or if it would be closer to how it is with the registration of a domain.

Rick said this depends on a number of factors, in the Netherlands at least – currently you would need a contract but you have the right to portability, so if you want to move after the contract period of a year, for instance, you can still move but you just find the flexible kind of contract that offers this and at the same time is a low cost provider. He said for companies this would mean special ranges such as 0800, and after that you could basically register anything that’s available.

Carsten asked if you could get individual numbers without a contract.

Rick said this was not yet possible but it was just a matter of time before it would be.

Robert Schischka,, said he was a dedicated ENUM operator in Austria and they have a system that allows people to choose from 3,000 numbers. He said this works for a closed community but someone has to pay for it.

He said it only really works with bundling and this requires someone offering this for no money. He said he appreciated the idea and the enthusiasm but beyond that he did not see how people could be motivated to use this.  Rick said that toll-free numbers was a service that allowed other people to reach you for free.

Robert said toll-free numbers were available in some countries but not for ENUM and it doesn’t solve the problem anyway. He said ENUM lookup still needed to be provided so it would scale.

Rick said he was not suggesting having ENUM behind a toll-free number but people and businesses might appreciate being able to be reached for free on something familiar like a phone number.

Robert said these so-called toll-free numbers are big business for the Telcos and somebody has to offer this. He said you could communicate by SIP address as well and then you don’t have to rely on the phone number. Rick said if he gave people a SIP number they get confused whereas they know what to do with a phone number.

Carsten said the conversation was taking place on different levels. He said what Rick was saying about 0800 numbers was that some companies were willing to pay for services for others so maybe it is possible to extend this to other areas.

Robert said the companies offering the service were not doing so for altruistic reasons. He said there might be applications for it but he didn’t see the critical mass.

Ričardas Pocius, LT ENUM Registry, said via the chat facility that some countries allow for personal/organisational assignments of numbering space. He said, for example, that Lithuania requires you to make this routable in PSTN and publication in ENUM may be sufficient to respond to this requirement, and this may be something people would like to know or suggest to their policy makers.

Anto Veldre, Estonian Information System Authority, said in Estonia the State has organised the possibility for every citizen to reroute at least two addresses: one is an email address in the format first name.last name@Estonia; the second is the Personal Identification Number. He said there is another possibility that redirects to some personal website, so there are several ideas in this area.

• D.2: “ new developments and service update” – Mihály Mészáros (30 min)

The presentation is available at:

Robert Schischka, at.nic, asked Mihály if everyone could connect to his end points. He wished to know if there were DDoS and brute force attacks if a number outside the NRENum were pointing to that tree.

Mihály said they do allow connections from outside if they delegate a validated E.164 number to the tree. He said they did not see any brute force attacks at the moment.

Rick van Rein, OpenFortress, said there was a difference between the academic and public use of ENUM, with the academic use growing more quickly than the public use. He asked if Mihály could explain this.

Mihály said the NREN community was very tightly connected and has joint workshops, and perhaps this was part of the reason. He said the NRENs are not motivated by the same concerns as business and so can concentrate on how the technology works and what is needed to implement the service.

Rick suggested to Mihály that he look at the idea of adding digits so that customers get set numbers or completely registered numbers.

Carsten said that the amount of queries the primary name server has seen over the past couple of months is more of a jump than a steady growth.

Mihály said he thought this was due to the query load script not using every query beforehand but then using it afterwards to get the bigger number.

Carsten said that the academic community was very inventive and he asked if there were any ideas in the pipeline for services other than telephony services, such as video-conferencing, that would still be classic services to some extent.

Mihály said ENUM lookup was only a lookup, so if there are other similar protocols supporting video conferencing or sharing secondary video streams then that’s why this service is interesting. He said the service is not limited to voice and IP telephony.

Carsten said this is exactly what he meant and he thanked Mihály for this news. Carsten said there is a service available in the academic community in Europe called EdRoam, where a student from one country can use the Wi-Fi present at the university in another country almost instantaneously. He asked if there was an initiative going on to have the number validation and perhaps offering a number to students that can be carried anywhere. He wondered if the authentication mechanism could be used in NRENum as well at some stage.

Mihály said that there needs to be a system for authentication and E.164 validation, and although they are thinking about it, they are not at that stage yet.

Niall thanked Mihály for his presentation and said that it was a huge achievement to have such volume and the widest deployment he has seen so far of a semi-open ENUM-based service.

E: ENUM Operations (10 min)

• E.1: Tier-0 Report - Anand Buddhdev

Anand gave the RIPE NCC ENUM Update. The presentation is available at:

Robert Schischka,, said it appeared as though two of the 31 delegations were not signed and healthy as indicated in the
presentation, and he suggested changing the wording to reflect this. Anand agreed and said it would be presented differently next time.

Rick van Rein, OpenFortress, said the EPP Protocol doesn’t allow for secure delegations to be submitted, and he suggested that this should also be checked.

Anand said he was referring to DNSSEC-signed and delegated zones in the ENUM top-level zone and was not looking at subsecure delegations. He said he was only looking at DNS records submitted by the ENUM operator to the RIPE NCC for inclusion in the zone.

Niall said that the information Rick was looking for was out of scope for Tier-0.

Carsten asked Anand if he was in contact with Tier-1 operators that have problems.

Anand said there was no regular process for contacting these operators. He said they had, on at least two occasions, attempted to contact the operators of all the zones where there were any problems. He said some responded and fixed the problems but quite a few others did not respond.

Carsten asked if Anand knew why Turkey was responsible for almost 90% of the NXDOMAIN queries.

Anand said this was not random and that it was from a resolver in Turkey. He said it appeared as though an ISP or network operator in Turkey had enabled ENUM in some application, and it's steadily sending out queries and not getting any useful responses.

F: Short News (5 min)

• F.1: update – Niall O’Reilly

Niall gave update on, the website that collects and summarises ENUM data. He said he was eager to have more information from ENUM operators for the website. He said the information could be sent to enum-wg-chairs _at_ ripe _dot_ net or Niall.oReilly _at_ ucd _dot_ ie and it would be dealt with.

Niall noted that there were two new delegations on the site as well as the comparative statistics for NRENum. He noted that NRENum has grown from a small project at the time of the Lisbon RIPE Meeting to the large deployment described today by Mihály Mészáros.

Carsten suggested that the community might find it useful to have, apart from the free information that is currently there, a group effort from ENUM operators on the website.

Niall agreed that this would be a good idea.

G: Discussion on Plenary presentation:

There was no discussion on the Plenary presentation.

X: Interaction with other working groups

There was nothing to report on interaction with other working groups.


Niall noted that revalidation, as well as being an issue with ENUM, was also an emerging issue with the organisation of the RIPE Working Groups. He said there was a task force report on the appointment and replacement and revalidation of RIPE Working Group Chairs. He encouraged anyone who felt they could join or replace Carsten or himself as ENUM Working Group Chairs to think about volunteering before the RIPE 66 Meeting in Dublin.

Z: Close (5 min)

Niall thanked the attendees, the presenters, the support staff from the RIPE NCC and the stenographers. He concluded the session meeting at 17:25.