Re: [secdir] review of draft-ietf-dnsext-dnssec-gost-05

Stephen Kent <> Sun, 24 January 2010 19:14 UTC

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Date: Sun, 24 Jan 2010 14:14:07 -0500
To: Basil Dolmatov <>
From: Stephen Kent <>
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Cc: Andrew Sullivan <>, Ralph Droms <>,,
Subject: Re: [secdir] review of draft-ietf-dnsext-dnssec-gost-05
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At 9:33 PM +0300 1/23/10, Basil Dolmatov wrote:
>Andrew Sullivan Ô˯ÂÚ:
>>>BTW, we have had this discussion in SIDR, 
>>>where the RPKI has a similar global scope and 
>>>where Vasily had made a similar request for 
>>>recognition of GOST algorithms. So far, that 
>>>WG has said no, for the reasons I cited in my 
>>>comments and above. The current plan there is 
>>>to go with the two suite model I described 
>>Ok.  Thanks for this; it's useful feedback.
>Andrew, I, being the participant in the quoted 
>process, want to share my description of what 
>had happened and I think that it will differ to 
>some extent.
>I noted that RPKI and SIDR implementations 
>having exactly no possibility to support 
>different protocols will definitely meet the 
>problems, which DNSSec is overcoming simply by 
>its design.
>Steve, in his presentation showed the technology 
>which gives possibility to given AS (or group of 
>ASes) to build entirely independent system of 
>distribution of routing information from the 
>outer world. That was _the_other_way_ to handle 
>possible protocol problems, just to present 
>mechanism, which allows to split whole system 
>into several entirely independent protocol 
>Comparing to DNS the IDR ideology is entirely 
>different: DNS is wholistic and united service, 
>but main IDR principle is the independence of 
>routing decisions for any given AS.
>I also noted then that from my point of view the 
>DNSSec protocol approach seems much more 
>productive for the development of the network as 
>a whole and maintaining its integrity, SIDR 
>approach from that perspective seems a 
>restrictive one and leading to the dead end in 
>the near future.
>I would be very cautious when considering the 
>borrowing of the technologies and approaches 
>from SIDR to any other protocols and services, 
>these technologies though allowing to "overcome" 
>possible protocol problems in fact will lead to 
>the network split.


I agree that there are differences between the 
DNS and RPKI contexts, but we disagree on the 
principle common aspects associated with how to 
accommodate multiple algorithms in both 

The question for both DNSSEC and SIDR/RPKI is how 
many algorithms relying parties MUST/SHOULD be 
required to implement, and how do we. The 
approach adopted (so far) in the SIDR context is 
to minimize such requirements, to not burden RPs, 
and to avoid creating the sort of potential 
security problems cited by Paul Hoffman. Thus the 
plan is to mandate support for two sets of 
algorithms (we have only one set so far), a 
current MUST implement and a next MUST implement.

I believe that the situation for DNESEC is 
equivalent, i.e., imposing a requirement (via 
MUST or SHOULD) to support more than a current 
and next set of algorithms is not justifiable. It 
imposes unacceptable costs on resolvers 
(analogous to RPs in the RPKI context) and may 
have adverse secruity implications. Such 
externalization of costs is a fundamentally bad 
approach, one that the IETF tries to avoid in 
analogous contexts in all areas.

It is fine for DNSEXT to allocate algorithm IDs 
to national algorithms like GOST, but it is not 
appropriate to mandate their support, for the 
reasons cited in my review.