[Tools-discuss] Re: [EXTERNAL] Re: Re: Fwd: Brief outage for the RPC infrastructure tomorrow (15May)

Brian E Carpenter <brian.e.carpenter@gmail.com> Fri, 17 May 2024 03:54 UTC

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Date: Fri, 17 May 2024 15:54:30 +1200
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To: Eric Rescorla <ekr@rtfm.com>
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From: Brian E Carpenter <brian.e.carpenter@gmail.com>
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CC: John Levine <johnl@taugh.com>, tools-discuss@ietf.org
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Subject: [Tools-discuss] Re: [EXTERNAL] Re: Re: Fwd: Brief outage for the RPC infrastructure tomorrow (15May)
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On 17-May-24 15:35, Eric Rescorla wrote:
> On Thu, May 16, 2024 at 8:13 PM Brian E Carpenter <brian.e.carpenter@gmail.com <mailto:brian.e.carpenter@gmail.com>> wrote:
>     On 17-May-24 13:47, John Levine wrote:
>      > It appears that Eric Rescorla  <ekr@rtfm.com <mailto:ekr@rtfm.com>> said:
>      >> Retrieving the documents over HTTPS provides both:
>      >>
>      >> 1. Confidentiality of which document is retrieved.
>     Correct, which is a privacy issue. I generally think of that
>     as distinct from security, when we are dealing with public
>     documents.
> I don't think the line is anywhere near as clear cut as this.
> Generally, we just call this property "confidentiality" regardless
> of the content being protected.
>      >> 2. Integrity of the document contents (to the level that this is what the
>      >> server currently believes).
>      >>
>      >> FTP provides neither of these.
>     Well, it provides integrity modulo the TCP checksum, I think. 
> TLS provides integrity against active attack on the wire, which the TCP
> checksum does not.
>     As John
>     Klensin just pointed out, if we were concerned about this, we'd really
>     need the RPC to provide signatures.
> No, not really. TLS--or other transport security mechanisms protect
> data against attack on the wire--but not against attack by the endpoint
> server. It's true that signatures would also protect against attack
> by the endpoint server, but turn out to be hard to deploy. By contrast,
> we've been very successful at deploying transport security. Again,
> this argument makes the best the enemy of the good.
> In any case, I don't particularly care about whether the RPC has FTP
> on and I agree the risk is low, but it's simply not correct to say that
> restricting our delivery of RFCs to secure transports has "nothing
> to do with security".

I concede that.


> -Ekr
>          Brian
>      >
>      > You're right, and if we had reports of maliciously tampered copies of
>      > RFCs floating around or a lot of politically sensitive stuff in RFCs,
>      > I would be more concerned.
>      >
>      > We have better ways to transfer documents including rsync and https,
>      > and it is fine to encourage people to use them, but in a world where
>      > there have been unsigned copies of RFCs floating around for 50 years,
>      > FTP tampering has to be rather low on my list of things to worry
>      > about.
>      >
>      > I would be more concerned about the effort needed by the RPC to keep
>      > the FTP server going, but if their FTP server is like my FTP server,
>      > looking at the same files the rsync and https servers do, the extra
>      > cost of FTP rounds to zero.
>      >
>      > R's,
>      > John
>      >
>      > PS: On the other hand, the Googlebot got stuck in my FTP server a few
>      > weeks ago and was hammering on it several times a second listing the
>      > same empty directory, which was just strange.
>      >
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