Monday, June 13, 2011

IP v6 is on the way - with Big Brother

You've probably all heard by now about the next great version of the IP addressing scheme call IP v6. We've already run out of our current IP addresses, so everyone is having to take turns on the internet - sharing the same addresses is like the party lines so many oldsters will tell you about when you complain that you only have one cell phone and it's always getting used for both business and personal calls and that just doesn't seem efficient, so you should get more phones and phone numbers to keep everything clear and they'll tell you that they used to share a phone number with Old Lady Magillicuddy down the block and they got by just fine and you can too, and you should like it.

Anyway, IP v6 is supposed to be set up so it will have more than enough addresses for every device owned by each and every person in the world (Yes, that's including India and China, bub!) to be assigned a static IP address, meaning one that doesn't change, it's always the same number, kind of like your phone number doesn't change when you hang up to make room for the next person to make a call.

This all sounds great, right? Sure it does - I want my own numbers for all my devices, and I don't want to share them with some twit down the road or in the next county or in the next country for that matter. It seems like a no brainer on the face of it, until you go over it with ay fine-tuned comb like I have done so.

What's the problem with this scheme? (Yes, I really do mean to call it a scheme, just read on, pal!)

Here's where we're going to run into problems where angels fear to tread. Having a single number for each item - and having it connected to a particular person also - means that it will finally be possible for folks in the know to be tracking any individual's activities in cyberspace.

I don't know about you, pal, but when I want to do some recreational web surfing, I don't need anyone else to know about it. It doesn't really matter if it's my bank following me, my squeeze looking over my virtual shoulder, my friendly public servants trying to figure out just what I "need" them to do for me, or the NSA trying to figure out just what that steganographic eye candy at the bottom of my emails is really all about.

IP v6 - a Good Idea? I don't think so, and neither will you when you see the black helicopters tracing IP traffic back to you.

Posted by Gyro Gearloose

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