Meeting Report

The sixth South East Europe (SEE)/RIPE NCC Regional Meeting took place from 12-13 June in Budva, Montenegro. A total of 111 attendees from 22 countries participated in the meeting, 33 of whom were from Montenegro.

The meeting was hosted by the RIPE NCC and the Agency for Electronic Communications and Postal Services, and was sponsored by MIXP (Montenegro Internet Exchange Point), The University of Montenegro, and Crnogorski Telekom (CT).

Welcoming attendees in the morning, Serge Radovcic from the RIPE NCC noted that this was the most diverse meeting in terms of participation from across the SEE region. He also suggested that members in Montenegro consider whether creating a Network Operators Group (NOG) would be helpful for them.

Pavle Mijuskovic said a few words as representative from the local host, the Agency for Electronic Communications and Postal Services. He thanked the RIPE NCC for its help in getting the Montenegro Internet Exchange Point off the ground and gave an overview of the telecommunications market in Montenegro.

One highlight from the first day was a very involved plenary session on the Internet of Things (IoT). Marco Hogewoning from the RIPE NCC drew an interesting comparison between the airline and IoT industries. Unlike the airline industry, the IoT field was open to anyone and not regulated, yet a lot of damage could be done by inexperienced operators. Kevin Meynell from ISOC explained his own experience with IoT devices that updated once or twice after being bought and then never again. How was it that there was a business model that allowed Windows PCs to be constantly updated but not cameras or smart TVs?

There was a lively panel discussion on what the industry could do to respond to concerns raised by the IoT. Was it the Industry's role to provide security to their customers by controlling what went over their network (by blocking ports), or was educating people a better approach? It was noted that there were a lot of different venues where IoT discussions were underway, and the RIPE community should establish what its piece of this puzzle was.

In the afternoon there was a session where attendees heard from IXPs in the region. Nenad Krajnovic presented on the development of the Serbian Open eXchange (SOX), reflecting in the growth it had undergone since it opened with two members in 2010 till today, with a total traffic of 200 Gbps.

Next was a presentation that explained the efforts to create a neutral IXP in Albania. Currently the country is an ISP-rich environment, and yet a great deal of content is hosted out of the country (including the top 20 Albanian websites). This is due to a lack of peering within the country and a focus on transit, which makes it easier to reach servers abroad. This was followed by a panel discussion with representatives from InterLAN, MIXP, NIX.cz, NaMeX and SOX who explained the challenges and commonalities around their efforts as IXPs.

On the second day, Emile Aben from the RIPE NCC presented the results of a RIPE Atlas measurement study that focused on whether local traffic in Montenegro was staying local. The study indicated that there was a lot of room for improvement, with traffic between Montenegro and Croatia, Serbia, and Albania taking long and indirect paths via Amsterdam and other places.

In the closing plenary there was a presentation from the .me domain, outlining their success operating a popular ccTLD registry, with many international brands outside of Montenegro using their .me extension.

The meeting presentations were given in English. The presentations are available in the presentation archive. Videos of the presentations are available on the South East Europe Regional Meeting YouTube channel.

The SEE 7/RIPE NCC Regional Meeting will take place in Timisoara, Romania, from 18-19 June 2018.