Internet!Surveillance!and!Boomerang!Routing!:! A!Call!for!Canadian!Network!Sovereignty!

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1 JonathanA.Obar,AndrewClement InternetSurveillanceandBoomerangRouting: ACallforCanadianNetworkSovereignty InP.Ross&J.Shtern(Eds.),TEM$2013$:$Proceedings$of$the$Technology$&$Emerging$Media$Track Citation Obar,J.A.&Clement,A.(2013).InternetSurveillanceandBoomerangRouting:ACallforCanadianNetwork Sovereignty.InP.Ross&J.Shtern(Eds.),TEM$2013$:$Proceedings$of$the$Technology$&$Emerging$Media$ Track$ $Annual$Conference$of$the$Canadian$Communication$Association$(Victoria,$June$5$ $7,$2013),URL:

2 InternetSurveillanceandBoomerangRouting: ACallforCanadianNetworkSovereignty 1 Author JonathanA.Obar FacultyofInformation,UniversityofToronto DepartmentofTelecommuncation,InformationStudiesandMedia,MichiganStateUniversity AndrewClement FacultyofInformation,UniversityofToronto Abstract Analysisofmorethan25,000internettraceroutesrevealsaphenomenonwecall boomerang routing,wherebycanadianptopcanadianinternettransmissionsareroutinelyroutedthrough theunitedstates.canadianoriginatedtransmissionsthattraveltoacanadiandestinationvia au.s.switchingcentreorcarrieraresubjecttou.s.lawpincludingtheusapatriotactand FISAA.Asaresult,thesetransmissionsexposeCanadianstopotentialU.S.surveillance activities,includingthosehighlightedbythesnowdenallegations aviolationofcanadian networksovereignty. InthefaceofthisunregulatedsurveillanceofCanadians,theFederalgovernmentand internetserviceprovidersshouldrepassertournationalnetworksovereigntyandbetter protectcanadiancivilliberties.inwhatfollows,wepresentboomerangroutefindingsand discussnsatrackingconcerns.wethenofferaplanforstrengtheningcanadiannetwork sovereigntyandprovidetwostrategiesforprotectingcanadianinternettransmissionsfrom Americansurveillance:1)strengthenandenforceCanadianprivacylaw(e.g.PIPEDA),and2) repatriatecanadianinternettrafficbybuildingmoreinternetexchangepoints. Keywords Surveillance;NSA;Telecommunications;Privacy;BigData;NetworkSovereignty 1 This research has received funding from Canada s Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council and the Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada. The IXmaps project is the work of a research team that currently includes Colin McCann and Antonio Gamba. David Phillips, Steve Harvey, GabbyResch,ErikStewart,NancyPaterson,MishaSnyderandLaurenDiMonte havemadeinvaluablecontributionsatearlierstagesoftheproject.wearealso gratefultothoseindividuals,largelyanonymous,whohavecontributedtothe databasebyinstallingandrunningtrgen,orhaveprovidedfeedbackthathas helpedimprovetheapplication. 1

3 1. Introduction Nationalsovereigntyisthreatenedwhenanotherwiseinternationally independent state has its rights and powers of internal regulation and controlviolatedbytheencroachmentofaforeignbody(barr,2002).asa sovereignwillcanbeimposedinanyareawherethereisarelationship betweenthepoliticalentityknownasthestateanditscitizens,thereare a multitude of sites for potential violation. One such site is network sovereignty P the authoritative quality or process whereby an entity (such as the state) or set of entities distinguishes the boundaries of a network and then exercises a sovereign will or control within those boundaries.anycontrollingentity,fromafeudalmonarchtoanelected government, exercises a form of network sovereignty when they construct or regulate any number of network systems ranging from transportation (e.g. roads, railroads, highways), utilities (e.g. water, electric) to communication (e.g. mail routes, telecommunication) in whichthestatehasavitalinterest.assovereigns,theycandecidewhere thesenetworksgo,theirstructuraldesignanddevelopment,theextent to which they operate, in whole or in part, and at what speed and capacity,aswellaswhoorwhatcantravelonthem,andatwhatprice.it follows that a threat to national network sovereignty constitutes encroachmentupontherightsandpowersofthestatetoregulateand controlanyofthesenetworkaspects. Canada s telecommunication system, as a critical infrastructure for nation building and sociopeconomic wellpbeing, is one site where the state has, over many years, attempted to exercise national network sovereignty. Following from a long history of protectionist policy, the Telecommunications Act of 1993 notes that Canadian telecommunications perform an essential role in the maintenance of Canada s identity and sovereignty (Telecommunications Act, 1993). Exercisingasovereignwill,theCanadiangovernmentalsodetermineda connectionbetweenitstelecommunicationsystemandtheprotectionof civil liberties. For example, the Act notes that Canadian telecommunicationsshould contributetotheprotectionoftheprivacy ofpersons (Ibid).TheseprivacyprotectionsarereinforcedbySection8 of the Canadian$ Charter$ of$ Rights$ and$ Freedoms that protects against unlawfulsearchandseizure,andbythepersonal$information$protection$ and$electronic$documents$act(pipeda),whichsafeguardsdataprivacyin theprivatesector.asaresult,shouldaforeignbodyencroachuponthe controlofacanadiantelecommunicationnetworkanditsoperation,that actionwouldconstituteaviolationofcanadiannetworksovereignty,and potentiallythreatencanadiancivilliberties. This paper presents findings from the IXmaps (for internet exchange mapping)projectattheuniversityoftoronto 2 aresearchinitiativethat maps and analyzes the routes Canadian data packets take across the internetbackbone.whilecanadiansaccessingamericanserversthrough 2 2

4 intendedcommunicationwithamericansandamericaninternetservices shouldexpecttosendpacketsacrosstheborder,onemightassumethat CanadianPtoPCanadian communication remains within national jurisdiction. Contrary to this assumption, the IXmaps research makes visibleawidespreadphenomenonwecall boomerangrouting whereby CanadianPtoPCanadian internet transmissions are routinely routed throughtheunitedstates 3.Canadianoriginatedtransmissionsthattravel toacanadiandestination,butviaau.s.switchingcentreoru.s.carrier, aresubjecttou.s.lawpincludingtheusapatriotactandfisaa 4.Asa result, CanadianPtoPCanadian internet transmissions that boomerang exposecanadiancommunicationstopotentialu.s.surveillanceactivities a violation of Canadian network sovereignty. These concerns are particularly acute in the wake of Edward Snowden s revelations about the National Security Agency s (NSA) internet surveillance programs (Clement,2014). Inthefaceofthisunregulated surveillance of Canadians, the Federal governmentandinternetserviceprovidersshouldrepassertournational networksovereigntyandbetterprotectcanadiancivilliberties.inwhat follows, we present IXmaps boomerang route findings, and discuss related concerns about NSA tracking. We then offer a plan for strengtheningcanadiannetworksovereigntyandprovidetwostrategies for protecting Canadian internet transmissions from American surveillance: 1) strengthen and enforce Canadian privacy law (e.g. PIPEDA), and 2) repatriate Canadian internet traffic by building more internetexchangepoints. 2. MappingCanadianBoomerangTrafficThroughtheU.S. Whenusersinteractwithinternetapplications( ,web,p2p,etc.) they send data packets over the internet. As each packet takes its individual path, it travels through data traffic routers that pass the packet closer to the destination. Anyone who has tracked a couriered mailpackageknowsthatmaildoesnottravelinastraightlinefrompoint A directly to point B, there are stops (or hops ) in different locations alongtheway thesameistruefordatapacketrouting. IXmapssoftwaremapsdatapacketroutes( traceroutes )usinggoogle EarthandGoogleMapstotracetheroutespacketstakefromtheuser s machine,throughthedifferenttrafficrouters( hops )alongthewayto the final destination. As shown in Figure 1, the software provides locationdata(i.e.latitudeandlongitude)foreachhopalongtheroute. Since2009,theIXmapsteamhasengagedinacrowdsourcingeffortto generateandaccumulatetraceroutes.morethan200contributorshave installedandruncustomizedtracegenerationsoftware(trgen),adding 3 While not recognized publically, it is wellpknown in the internet routing communitythatsignificantportionsofintrapcanadiantraffictransitstheus. 4 Notably Section 215 of the USA Patriot Act, and Section 702 of the Foreign SurveillanceIntelligenceAmendmentsAct(FISAA). 3

5 Obar & Clement Internet Surveillance and Boomerang Routing to a database currently containing well over 25,000 traceroutes from over 200 distinct originating addresses, terminating in more than 2,500 distinctdestinations. Figure'1' 'Toronto.New'York.Chicago.Toronto'Boomerang'Traceroute'Details' Figure1presentsthetraceroutedatafora boomerangroute,apath thatoriginatesandterminatesinthesamecountry,buttransitsanother. As depicted in Figure 2, this traceroute begins and ends in Canada, but crossesintotheu.s.alongtheway. Figure'2' 'Toronto.New'York.Chicago.Toronto'Boomerang'Route$ From the database of 25,000 traceroutes, 5,560 originate and terminate in Canada, of those, 1,280, roughly onepquarter, boomerang through the United States. Some of the online interactions that boomerang through the U.S. include visits to Canadian government websites,includingtheofficeoftheprivacycommissionerofcanada,as wellasanumberofpersonalbankingsitessuchasbankofmontreal,td CanadaTrustandCIBC. 4

6 3. CanadianBoomerangTrafficandNSASurveillance In2006,MarkKlein,aretiredAT&Ttechnician,revealedthattheU.S. NationalSecurityAgency(NSA)hadinstalledsurveillanceequipmentat AT&T smainsanfranciscointernetexchangepoint(ixp)at611folsom St. (Klein, 2009). By installing splitters that directed exact copies of all traffic passing through the IXP to secret computers, the NSA s surveillance system is capable of monitoring the process of communication (i.e. sender and receiver), but also the contents of messages as well. Much of the intercepted traffic is saved for later analysis. The NSA s secret data center or spy facility currently being builtinutah,willsoonbecapableofhandlingseveraldecadesworthof internet traffic (Bamford, 15 Mar 2012). 5 Recent revelations by whistlebloweredwardsnowdenreinforcetheseallegations,pointingto widespread NSA interception of domestic U.S. internet traffic (Greenwald,7Jun2013;Greenwaldetal,2013) Based on conversations and meetings with other AT&T staff, Klein (2009) reports that surveillance installations, like that in San Francisco, existinfiveotherlocations:atlanta,losangeles,sandiego,sanjoseand Seattle. Clement (2013) identifies 18 cities in the U.S. that likely have similarsurveillancesites.furthermore,ofthe1,319u.s.ponlytraceroutes heldintheixmapsdatabase,99percenttravelthroughatleastoneof these cities, suggesting that the NSA has almost complete surveillance capabilitiesforallu.s.internettraffic(ibid). TheextentofU.S.surveillanceofCanadiandatapacketsislessclear. Table 1 lists the topp10 U.S. cities suspected of having installed NSA splitteroperations(clement,2013).thetablealsonotesthepercentage of the 1,280 CanadianPUSPCanada boomerang routes housed in the IXmaps database that pass through these cities, potentially subject to U.S.surveillanceefforts.Currentfindingsrevealthatcitiesclosesttothe CanadianborderaremorelikelytorouteCanadiandata.Approximately 50 percent of IXmaps boomerang routes pass through New York and Chicago,thetoptwocitiessuspectedofhavingNSAsplitters,andabout 25percenttravelthroughSeattle. 6 5 The size of big data and the speed of its exponential growth are difficult to grasp.ibmreportsthatattheturnofthemillennium,800,000petabytes(10 15 bytes)werestoredintheworld(zikopoulos,eaton,deroos,deutsch,&lapis, 2012).In2020,itisprojectedthatthisnumberwillreach35zettabytes(10 21 bytes).theamountofdatathensawillreportedlybecapableofstoringisin therangeofyottabytes(10 24 bytes). 6 ThesefiguresareapproximateasthegeoPlocationofroutersisnotprecise. 5

7 NSA %ofcdnkuskcdntraffic City Boomerangs Likelihood (1280Routes) 1 NewYork,NY % 2 Chicago,IL % 3 LosAngeles,CA 6 <1% 4 Atlanta,GA 42 3% 5 Dallas,TX 21 2% 6 SanFrancisco,CA 12 1% 7 Washington,DC % 8 Seattle,WA % 9 SanDiego,CA 0 0% 10 Boston,MA 10 1% Table'1' 'Canada.US.Canada'Boomerangs'and'Likelihood'of'NSA'Surveillance' The boomerang routing and threat of NSA surveillance suggests that many of the ISPs routing Canadian internet traffic are jeopardizing the sovereignty and privacy of Canadians mandated by the TelecommunicationsActandPIPEDA. 4. ACallforCanadianNetworkSovereignty Foreign surveillance of Canadian internet transmissions threatens Canadian civil liberties and violates our sovereignty. This call for Canadian network sovereignty urges the Federal government to strengthenoursecuritypoliciesandrelatedenforcementmechanismsto ensure that CanadianPtoPCanadian communication remains within our national boundaries and jurisdiction. Canadian democratic institutions likely cannot affect U.S. surveillance practices, but they can exert pressure to ensure that those operating within the jurisdiction of Canadian law make the protection of Canadian sovereignty and civil libertiesatoppriority.werecommendthatpolicyeffortsstrengthenand enforcecanadianprivacylaws,andworktorepatriatecanadianinternet trafficbybuildingmoreinternetexchangepoints StrengthenCanadianPrivacyLaws(i.e.PIPEDA) Canadiandataroutingandcollectionpracticesneedgreaterprotection by Canadian privacy policy. While the Personal$ Information$ Protection$ and$ Electronic$ Documents$ Act (PIPEDA) demonstrates the Federal government sinterestinprivacyprotections,moreneedstobedoneto ensure results. When PIPEDA went into effect at the turn of the millennium, Facebook, Twitter and smartphones didn t exist. More of ourlivesarebeinglivedonline,witheachactivityproducingstreamsof finepgrainedpersonaldata. Canada s Privacy Commissioners should more vigourously apply existinglaw,andcanadianprivacypoliciesalsoneedtobestrengthened. As federal Commissioner Jennifer Stoddart notes, PIPEDA is outdated andinneedofreform, As organizations find new ways to profit from personal information,therisks to privacy are growing exponentially.[ ]Itisincreasinglyclearthatthelawisnot up to the task of meeting the challenges of today and certainlynotthoseoftomorrow.(opc,23may2013) 6

8 Furthermore,whiletheOfficeofthePrivacyCommissioner(OPC)has prompted companies to improve their privacy practices, actions are rarely proactive, with minimal reactions more often the result after considerable OPC resources have been spent (Ibid). Stoddart notes, [t]he legislation lacks mechanisms strong enough to ensure organizationsinvestappropriatelyinprivacy (Ibid). TheOPChasreleasedapositionpiece(OPC,2013)callingforPIPEDA reformthatwoulddomoretostrengthennationalnetworksovereignty aswellasprivacy.thesereformsinclude: 1) Strengthening OPC enforcement powers including: a) statutory damages to be administered by Federal Court for violations, b) orderpmakingpowersfortheopcthatwouldforceorganizations toperformorceasecertainactions,andc)monetarypenaltiesto beimposedbytheopc. 2) Breach notification: requiring organizations to report privacy breachestotheopcandtoaffectedusers. 3) Increasedtransparency:transparencyreportswouldberequired, disclosing law enforcement and other government requests for personalinformation,andtheextenttowhichentitiescomply. 4) Promoteaccountability:organizationswouldhavetodemonstrate accountability (proactive privacy protections) upon request. The enforceable agreements concept, the notion that OPC can compel action, would be incorporated into the law, with accountability provisions being subject to review by a Federal Court. Each of these reforms should be implemented with a focus on data collection and management practices, including routing behaviours. While enforcement power will be essential to ensure compliance, greater transparency is also vital to ensure a more democratic assessment of current practices. It is unrealistic to expect a quick and completeshifttonetworksovereignty,andthus,publicunderstandingof the reform is essential. Currently, PIPEDA requires that users submit privacy complaints to carriers. Without greater transparency, this requirementislikelytoaccomplishlittleprotection,asusersareunable todeterminetheextenttowhichtheircivillibertiesarebeingviolated. Greater transparency and enforcement will push back against the development of industry practices that subject Canadians to U.S. surveillanceeffortsandthreatenourprivacyandnationalsovereignty RepatriateInternetTrafficByBuildingMoreCanadian InternetExchangePoints Passinglawsmandatingroutingpatternswillbeproblematicifcarriers are not provided with the tools to ensure that a sovereign Canadian internet network will be able to function. While political economic relationships between carriers contribute to routing patterns, network congestion issues, specifically Canadian IXP bottlenecks, are a realistic concern that can direct routing and as a result, impact network sovereigntyandprivacy. 7

9 Internetexchangepoints(IXPs)havemanybenefitsincludingtheability tohelpreducenetworkcongestionandincreasethelikelihoodoflocal peering(itu,2013).ithasbeensuggestedthatthepresenceaswellas management of IXPs can impact an entire region s Internet economy (Ryan and Gerson, 2012; ITU, 2013). Other related benefits include: reducingthenumberofnetworkhopstoexchangetraffic,optimizingthe useofinternationalconnectivity,improvingnetworkresilienceandlikely qualityofservice,reducingtransmissioncostsandinternationalcapacity costs (potentially millions of dollars per year), and increasing the possibility of greater internet penetration rates (ITU, 2013). Indeed, given the rise of the internet economy and the intensification of the internet s centrality to everyday life, the importance of IXPs is only growing. ToensureCanadiannetworksovereignty,moreIXPsneedtobebuilt. 7 As of June 2012, Canada only had three IXPs. In the last year, two additionalixpshavebeenaddedtothelist.bycomparison,theunited States has 86 IXPs (Packet clearing house, 2013). As Byron Holland, presidentofthecanadianinternetregistrationauthoritynotes, Thereisonewaytoprotectourselves,tosomedegree,fromhavingour data fall under the jurisdiction of a foreign country. We must ensure moreofittravelstoitsdestinationviacanadianroutes.[ ]Itistimefor CanadatorepatriateitsInternettraffictothebestextentpossible[ ]to do this will require more Internet Exchange Points [ ] By building a robustcanadianinternetinfrastructure,includinganationpwidefabricof IXPs, we can ensure more Canadian traffic stays in Canada, and is thereforeonlysubjecttocanadianlaw.(holland,24jun2013) The Canadian government should continue to invest in this vital infrastructure, which is certainlylinkedtoeconomicbenefit,aswellas theprotectionofprivacyandnetworksovereignty. 5. Conclusion When Canadian internet traffic boomerangs through the U.S., the transmissionsbecomesubjecttou.s.lawsincludingthepatriotactand FISAA. With U.S. security agencies engaging in broad domestic surveillance, CanadianPtoPCanadian transmissions may be subject to interception.tosafeguardcanadiannetworksovereignty,thecanadian governmentshoulddomoretoensurethatthecommercialentitiesthat route Canadian internet transmissions are compelled to protect them, andasaresult,userprivacy.networksovereigntybeginswithstronger governmentpolicyandenforcementmechanismsthatcanenhanceisp best practices and spur industry selfpregulation. The building of more Canadian internet exchange points and promotion of their use will removejustificationsforinternationalpeering,andstrengthencanada s interneteconomy. 7 SeetheCIRAreportbyWoodcock&Edelman(2012). 8

10 These efforts will contribute to state sovereignty, but will not free Canadiansfrombeingsurveilled.Interceptionstrategiessimilartothose being perpetrated by the NSA are also likely taking place in Canada. SimilartothebillionPdollar spycenter beingbuiltinutah(bamford,15 Mar 2012), Communications Security Establishment Canada (CSEC) is currentlybuildingan$880millionintelligencecomplexrightnexttothe Canadian Security Intelligence Service s headquarters (Pugliese, 12 Oct 2009). While CSEC denies any claim of domestic surveillance activity (CTV,10Jun2013)ithasbeensuggestedthatthepurposeofthisnew facilityistoemulatethensa(tencer,8jun2013). National network sovereignty is threatened when an otherwise internationally independent state has its rights and powers of internal network regulation and control violated by the encroachment of a foreign body. Though the multitude of challenges presented by our evolving telecommunications system can seem insurmountable (Obar, 2013),pragmaticandrealisticstrategiesforbolsteringCanadiannetwork sovereigntyareneeded.canadiansshouldadvocatefortougherprivacy policies and enforcement of the law to ensure that civil liberties are protected.weshouldalsochampioninvestmentintelecommunications infrastructure, especially internet exchange points that would, in combination with stronger policies, reduce dependence on foreign routing, strengthen our internet economy and restore faith in the commitmentsofourpublictrustees. 9

11 References Bamford, J. (15 Mar 2012). The NSA is building the country sbiggestspycenter(watchwhatyousay). Wired. Retrieved July 20, 2013 from enter/ Barr,B.(2002).Protectingnationalsovereigntyinaneraof international meddling: an increasingly difficult task.harvard$$ journal$of$legislation,$39,299p 324. Clement,A.(2013).IXmaps trackingyourpersonaldata through the NSA s warrantless wiretapping sites. Proceedings$ of$ the$ IEEE$ $ ISTAS$ conference. Toronto.June27P30,2013. Clement, A. (2014, forthcoming) NSA Surveillance: Exploringthegeographiesofinternetinterception, To be presented at the iconference2014, Berlin, March4P7,2014 CTV.(10Jun2013).DataPcollectionprogramnottargeting Canadians: MacKay. Retrieved July 26, 2013 from notptargetingpcanadianspmackayp Greenwald,G.(7Jun2013).NSAPrismprogramtapsinto user data of Apple, Google and others. The$ Guardian.$ Retrieved July 20, 2013 from giantspnsapdata Greenwald, G., MacAskill, E. & Poitras, L. (10 Jun 2013). Edward Snowden:the whistleblower behind the NSA surveillance revelations. The$ guardian.$$ Retrieved July 20, 2013 from snowdenpnsapwhistleblowerpsurveillance Holland,B.(24Jun2013).PRISM,internetexchangepoints and Canada. Public$ domain$ (blog).$ Accessed July 26, 2013 from internetpexchangeppointspandpcanada/$ InternationalTelecommunicationsUnion.(2013).Internet exchanges points (IXPs). WTPF backgrounder series.retrievedjuly26,2013from 13/Documents/backgrounderPwtpfP13PixpsPen.pdf Klein,M.(2009).Wiringupthebigbrothermachine and fightingit.charleston,sc:booksurgepublishing. Obar, J.A. (2013). Phantom data sovereigns: Walter Lippmann,bigdataandthefallacyofpersonaldata sovereignty. Working paper. Retrieved July 26, 2013 from id= OfficeofthePrivacyCommissionerofCanada.(2013).The$ case$for$$ reforming$ the$ Personal$ Information$ Protection$ and$ Electronic$ Documents$ Act.$ Retrieved July 26, 2013 from 5_e.asp$ Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada. (23 May 2013). New release: new privacy challenges demand stronger protections for Canadians. Retrieved July 26, 2013 from c_130523_e.asp Packet clearing house. (2013). Internet exchange point growth. Retrieved July 26, 2013 from ary/growth/ Pugliese, D. (12 Oct 2009). Canadian spies Camelot : defencehopingot attractworldp class talent with $880M intelligence complex. National$ Post.RetrievedJuly 26, 2013 from anpspiespcamelotpdefencephopingptopattractpworldp classptalentpwithp880mpintelligencepcomplex/ Ryan, P.S. & Gerson, J. (2012). A primer on internet exchange points for policymakers and nonp engineers. Retrieved July 26, 2013 from id= TelecommunicationsAct.(1993,c.38).Retrievedfromthe Government of Canada Justice Laws website: Tencer, D. (8 Jun 2013). NSA spying on Canadians, CSEC capableofsimilarsurveillance:experts.huffington Post. Retrieved July 26, 2013 from spyingpcanada_n_ html Woodcock,B.&Edelman,B.(2012).Towardefficienciesin Canadianinternettrafficexchange.Areportforthe Canadian Internet Registration Authority. Retrieved December 9, 2013 from EfficienciesPinPCanadianPInternetPTrafficP Exchange2.pdf Zikopoulos,P.,Eaton,C.,deRoos,D.Deutsch,T.,&Lapis, G.(2012).Understanding$big$data.NewYork,NY: McGrawPHill. 10

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