back to article Queen's Speech: 'Problem of matching IP addresses' to be probed

The Queen opened a new session of Parliament this morning and - as expected - Home Secretary Theresa May's Communications Data bill was absent from the government's upcoming programme of law-making for the next year. However, as indicated by Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg - who said late last month that the so-called …

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  1. Bumpy Cat

    What's the spooks' solution?

    I wonder what the various max-surveillance types in the security services would actually like. Would they be want a China-style solution where you have to present your ID to get access to any kind of internet access?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: What's the spooks' solution?

      I vote for a single, nationwide DHCP server managed by Gov.UK that everyone is obliged to use. Much simpler than ID tokens.

      ;-)

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Big Brother

        Re: What's the spooks' solution?

        shhh don't go giving them ideas or we'll all be required to login at access.the.internet.gov.uk before surfing/emailing/gaming.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: What's the spooks' solution?

        Surely it would be better to use static or DHCP reserved addresses rather than normal DHCP allocated ones (if they want to make traceability easier and not have to look through DHCP logs). Maybe a reserved DHCP lease based on your Identity Card, NI number (or even some new "Internet Licence Number") sent as the GUID in the request.

        Otherwise use a national captive portal.

        I am joking of course as I know this wouldn't work well and could easily be circumvented/spoofed etc - but I guess somewhere, somebody is thinking along these lines...so perhaps I shouldn't give them ideas. :-)

    2. Don Jefe
      Unhappy

      Re: What's the spooks' solution?

      No Big Brother worrier here, but in the U.S. you generally do have to provide ID to access the Internet. A credit card through your ISP and/or mobile carrier, and a valid govt issued ID or library card (which is tied to your ID) for library access. Same in most hotels, airports and bus stations as well. I suppose you could go around looking for free open wireless but that's providing fewer options daily.

      All I'm saying is that the Internet isn't nearly as anonymous as people like to think, especially if the person who wants to pry has a warrant.

      1. HamsterNet
        Facepalm

        Re: What's the spooks' solution?

        What like a Starbucks, or McDees, but they so hard to find!

    3. andreas koch
      Flame

      Re: What's the spooks' solution?

      The solutiion is easy: Switch it off. No more smut then.

      Likewise ban sugar, salt and all the other things that make people die. Outlaw alcohol, tobacco and cars. And sex, as you're at it.

      Unfortunately then everyone (well, most people anyway) will find Spain or France so appealing that they will no longer fork out taxes to pay for the wages of home secretary or deputy prime minister.

      Who the flying f'!$% voted for this bunch to waste resources on this?

      1. John Smith 19 Gold badge
        Unhappy

        Re: What's the spooks' solution?

        "Who the flying f'!$% voted for this bunch to waste resources on this?"

        No one of course.

        This was conceived at least 8 Home Secretaries ago as the Interception Modernization Programme. It's essentially an idea thought up by a group of former senior intelligence civil servants.

        Naturally they are mostly PPE graduates (there was one with a degree in particle physics) with no remote idea of what they are asking for or the scale of the problem.

      2. Shonko Kid
        Joke

        "And sex, as you're at it."

        Can't you wait till I'm done?

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: What's the spooks' solution?

      Next I suppose they want you to fill out some form in advance telling them where you plan to drive in your car, and how many passengers and why.

  2. Ian 62
    Black Helicopters

    If they rolled out IPv6

    We could have them personally assigned, on providing our ID cards and DNA.

    Oh..wait a moment...

    /me wonders if we'll next hear an announcement from HMG that they're going to help fund the roll out of IPv6 for "the benefit of our e-economy". And nothing at all to do with copyright, intellectual property, terrorism & pron.

    1. Annihilator
      Thumb Up

      Re: If they rolled out IPv6

      If it speeds up the delivery of IPv6, I'll take it. Not like VPNs would suddenly cease to exist too.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: If they rolled out IPv6

        agree with you that personally I don't mind all of my data packets being made into digitally signed and certificated evidence (IPv6) with the MAC address of the packet origin device also signed evidence.

        Some other users may occasionally like to have a bit more pseudonimity, journalists, HMRC whistleblowers (google Osita Mba) etc - what privacy enhancing tools will they be able to use? (and I don't (yet) class ToR as being a safe tool for hazardous circumstances)

        I disagree slightly in that VPN may well be 'virtual' - but they increasingly fail to be 'private' as the ease of snooping the data using multipurpose 'special' PKI certificates is no longer just at State level, but increasing at Enterprise level too. Sometimes that too can be OK, but do we just "get over it"? or do 'we' have to build our own nitrogen pressurised fibreoptic crypto systems with keydump on loss of pressure to swap great LOLcatz pics?

        1. Dazed and Confused

          Re: If they rolled out IPv6

          I disagree slightly in that VPN may well be 'virtual' - but they increasingly fail to be 'private' as the ease of snooping the data using multipurpose 'special' PKI certificates

          You're telling me that Enterprises can watch what's happening inside an SSH link?

          I think a lot of people might like to have a little chat with you.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: If they rolled out IPv6

            You're telling me that Enterprises can watch what's happening inside an SSH link?

            Of course they can. And do.

            F'rinstance

            http://www.phoenixdatacom.com/products/monitoring-visibility-into-ssl-traffic-up-to-3-5-gbps/

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Seeing inside an SSH/SSL link

              Only the issuer of the certificate/key can see inside the link - that would include the possibility that those who issue SSL certificates like Verisign are cooperating with various governments. If you must use a properly issued certificate rather than self-signed and want to minimize the chance your own government can decrypt your traffic, you might want to choose a CA based in a country that's on less than friendly terms with your own. In the US we might want to see if there are any options in Venezuela, for instance. In the UK, you're probably pretty safe if you can find an Argentinian CA :)

              You can't ever discount the possibility that the NSA and their friends in the UK have broken the encryption scheme you're using, but even if they have done so, the decryption won't be free, so it couldn't be done en masse unless they're so far ahead they have working quantum supercomputers. Assuming they can't do it for everyone, they'd have to take a special interest in you to decrypt your traffic. If they do, you probably have much bigger problems than insecure encryption once they send a black bag squad over to bug your computers, your house, your car, and your cat.

              Even if the NSA doesn't decrypt your traffic in real time, that doesn't mean some of it isn't getting saved somewhere so it can be decrypted later just as the Boston investigation has proven phone calls to be.

              The worries about your place of your decrypting your traffic are nil. If you're accessing your home SSH server or email server using self signed/created certificates, they can't possibly do this. Nothing stops them from having keylogger software on your work issued computer, of course, so if you're paranoid about this, you may want to inquire about their BYOD policy :)

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          MAC address in packet - not that myth again!

          "I don't mind all of my data packets being made into digitally signed and certificated evidence (IPv6) with the MAC address of the packet origin device also signed evidence."

          Not that myth again (I wonder if Snopes or Adam and Jamie could be pursued to address this....).

          Yes, at one point there was the consideration to make the bottom 48 bits of the IPv6 address be the MAC address of the device, to simplify stateless autoconfiguration. Then EVERYBODY pointed out the obvious security flaws in that idea, and the idea of using the MAC address to form the publicly routeable address was DROPPED. AXED. KILLED. REMOVED. That idea is not pinin' for the fjords, it is PASSED ON.

          Even the idea of using the MAC address for the link local addresses has been made OPTIONAL, and alternatives to allow link local addresses to be created randomly have been defined.

        3. Yes Me Silver badge
          Thumb Up

          Re: If they rolled out IPv6

          Fortunately, IPv6 can help your privacy: RFC4941.

    2. JamesC
      Facepalm

      Re: If they rolled out IPv6

      We can only hope this will speed up the rollout of IPv6 before we're all forced behind CGN :(

    3. Crisp

      Re: copyright, intellectual property, terrorism & pron.

      None of those things are things that I worry about.

  3. Dr Who

    Clegg ... a tough nut to crack

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      I think you have the words in the wrong order. 'Clegg- a cracked nut'. And where the 'tough' comes in I'm not sure,except when he's claiming his EU pension.

      1. ACx

        Its all those "tough decisions" they have to keep taking, out of choice... Oh, no, its all the previous governments fault.

  4. itzman

    If more proof were needed...

    That the political class has even less understanding of the Internet than the general public, this has to be it.

    Endless argument and billions spent on solutions to non-existent problems that don't even work and will never even work.

    Unless everybody is bolted to a fixed IP address and massive router flap happens when they connect via a wifi hotspot, there is never going to be a way to guarantee IP level traceability, and NAT rules anyway.

    Even if you stuck a MAC address in the packet, that too can be hacked away.

    Of COURSE it would be simple if every single message could be uniquely tagged to an end user or piece of physical kit. It would be simple if we all had chips embedded in our foreheads uniquely identifying who we are so that our movements could be recorded in real time on Stasi Central's computers. "we note that you and your neighbour's wife's GPS are coincident in her bedroom for over three hours: vote Stasi or your wife gets to hear".

    Like all grandiose and lazy political schemes, it will cost a fortune, wont work, and will simply irritate people.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      H

      My forehead would be the one with a H on it. Hammond organ recital any one?

    2. Elmer Phud
      Trollface

      Re: If more proof were needed...

      "That the political class has even less understanding of the Internet than the general public, this has to be it."

      Oh, come off it -- they have Martha Lane Fox on board , an expert on all things internet.

    3. Cucumber C Face
      Facepalm

      Re: If more proof were needed...

      True - but there are people out there dumber than the politicians.

      The average child murderer or terrorist bomber does seem incapable of emptying (much less wiping) their Internet browsing history and cache - let alone fathom VPNs, anonymous proxies, MAC obfuscation etc.

      This does give the illusion that a mega-log of everything an ISP sees could be trawled for suspicious activity.

      1. S4qFBxkFFg

        Re: If more proof were needed...

        "The average child murderer or terrorist bomber that actually gets caught does seem incapable of emptying (much less wiping) their Internet browsing history and cache - let alone fathom VPNs, anonymous proxies, MAC obfuscation etc."

        Fixed.

        (Although, I accept your point; there aren't that many unsolved bombings / child murders.)

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: If more proof were needed...

          "(Although, I accept your point; there aren't that many unsolved bombings / child murders.)"

          It seems that a lot (most?) intelligence led "terrorist" arrests seem to end up without any terrorist offence to prosecute. Others have been prosecuted for having accessed freely available material that was once the knowledge of any half-intelligent schoolboy.

          There was that raid where a man was accidentally shot. Eventually the Police said that even though they hadn't found any evidence for a terrorist charge - there were other offences. The major one specifically being kiddie pr0n. Finally they had to admit the latter was one alleged thumbnail in a cache - insufficient for any charge.

        2. Intractable Potsherd

          Re: If more proof were needed...

          "(Although, I accept your point; there aren't that many bombings / child murders that don't get pinned on someone.)

          Fixed that for you, too.

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: If more proof were needed...

      Dot1x + Radius....

  5. Sir Runcible Spoon

    Sir

    Hearing the Queen talk about IP addresses is like listening to a budgie discuss quantum physics.

    Weird.

    1. Eponymous Cowherd
      Unhappy

      Re: Sir

      I wouldn't be surprised if Her Majesty knows a damn sight more about IP addresses than the Govtards who will be formulating this legislation.

      1. Will Godfrey Silver badge
        Happy

        Re: Sir

        I'll go further. I'd be surprised if she didn't know more than the numpties. She has a long history of being well informed.

        1. Ian Yates
          Stop

          Re: Sir

          But... "cyberspace"!

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Sir

          The queen "has a long history of being well informed".

          In fact, there is a long history of assorted sycophants and spin doctors asserting that she is well-informed (and possesses a large number of other virtues to boot).

          I'd rather converse with Sir Runcible's budgie.

  6. This post has been deleted by its author

    1. Rikkeh

      I suspect that they're merely humouring each Home Secretary each time this comes up, safe in the knowledge that each minister won't last long enough in the job to chase them up on it.

      Could've been worse, Theresa May could well have demanded Batman's sonar phones from the Dark Knight.

      1. Will Godfrey Silver badge
        Unhappy

        Arrrgh!

        Please give prior warning before mentioning that woman's name.

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    This "problem" will only get worse

    BT are running tests on carrier-grade NAT so one IP address will support many users simultaneously, making it much harder to match subscribers (let alone users) to online activity.

    Unfortunately, this will also break many of the interesting things you might want to do online.

    1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

      Re: This "problem" will only get worse

      What's so hard?

      BT have a record of which customer was getting which packet, BT are more than happy to help the government by handing over any data , with or without a warrant.

      A more serious IP problem is that it doesn't uniquely record which site you visited. Your machine access 100.200.100.200 to download a thumbnail from an advertiser on el'reg. That server also hosts the Grimethorpe Ferret Lovers secret photo archive - so the fair and wise ms May has a recordt hat you accesssed a site showing images of under-age ferrets

      1. Colin Miller

        Re: This "problem" will only get worse

        Most (httpd)server logging assume that the IP address the request came from is enough to track its owner. With NATs the (httpd)server also has to log the TCP Port number.

        With the Port number and time, then the NATs logs (in theory) can be checked to see which customer (unless that is also a NAT; say an open wifi) the request came from.

        1. Dazed and Confused

          Re: This "problem" will only get worse

          A great many NAT systems don't provide that sort of logging and the logs would be horrendous in volume anyway. Each socket you open would need to be separately logged. Then there would be the issue of stacked NAT. You'd need to correlate the logs of each level to get a fix.

          So are they going to enact legislation that bans NAT systems that don't automatically log each translation?

          I run quite a few connections where we stick a Linux box at the front end and it'll do all the NAT you want, but adding a couple of lines to your iptables config ain't going produce logs of what packets originate from which of your internal addresses. Then there is the matter of identifying the internal addresses. My youngest managed to find out how to change the MAC address on his phone at the age of ten, in a vain attempt to get around his "bedtime WiFi blocking" (hopefully he's not reading this) but if he'd chosen to spoof to the MAC address of another device in the house he'd have probably succeeded.

          I'm afraid the boy Clegg hasn't got a clue about what he's talking about. He's in the normal politician's state of mind where he is only hearing what he wants to hear. Add to that the fact he's surrounded by people who only get paid if they tell him what he wants to hear and we end up at the mess they usually leave us in.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: This "problem" will only get worse

          "With the Port number and time, then the NATs logs (in theory) can be checked to see which customer (unless that is also a NAT; say an open wifi) the request came from."

          A browser instance usually makes four TCP connections in parallel. In the old days each connection was discarded after downloading an HTML element - and a new one was opened for the next element. Modern HTTP keeps the TCP connections open for longer.

          These are usually closed when: a new page URL is accessed; the connection has been idle for a couple of minutes; a busy HTTP server/proxy decides it doesn't want a potentially idle connection once the element request is fulfilled.

          In practice that means any particular NAT source port is only assigned to a particular end user for a very short time. A source port number has to be put back into the active pool quite quickly given the fast turnover of a large ISP's NAT connections.

          There are only a maximum of 65k+ source port numbers. So the NAT TCP stack implementation has either to have one global pool of source port numbers shared by all connections - or several pools differentiated with some additional connection criteria.

  8. MrMur

    So we'll be getting individual tokens issued and every packet we send will be signed using our private key on the token. It's the only thing I can think of.

    ofcourse, one wonders how much the copyright lobbyists have had their say on this matter.

  9. JimmyPage Silver badge
    FAIL

    This from a government that can't move on from IE6 ?

    I really wouldn't worry about it, I really wouldn't.

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Guilty until proved innocent

    In other words, we assume you are guilty, and reserve the right to infringe your liberties, and if we accidentally accuse you of being a terrorist or pervert, then you can sort it out yourself.

  11. Anonymous Cowherder
    FAIL

    The police are as bad

    I was contacted by our local police force to assist with the identification of stolen equipment. One of their senior bods had heard that you could trace machines via IP address and wanted me to let them know how they could match up devices (PS3s, Xboxs and phones) with IPs so they could return them to the owner.

    I told them that they each device would have a MAC address that was unique (I didn't go into spoofing) but that the IP would change depending upon which network it was connected to. They could cross reference the MAC address against information ISPs help about which MAC address had been assigned which IP address. The police were adamant that this wasn't the case and that the IP was the only piece of information they needed to identify the device.

    I tried to explain that the laptop I was emailing them on was picking up xxx.xxx.xxx.xxx at work but it picked up yyy.yyy.yyy.yyy when I was at home and zzz.zzz.zzz.zzz when I was connected to a different network. I gave them a brief overview of DHCP and DNS and they were still fixated on IPs and IPs alone as the single identifying factor.

    I advised them to contact their IT department to corroborate what I had told them and to get back to me if they wanted further clarification. They never got back to me.

    1. ACx

      Re: The police are as bad

      They are probably still trying to understand what you said to them.

      1. Jediben
        Devil

        Re: The police are as bad

        Or they have been dialling xxx.xxx.xxx.xxx to try to reach you at work.

        When they got no reply they tried calling you at yyy.yyy.yyy.yyy in case you were at the office...

    2. Crisp

      Why would the police ask you for your expert opinion

      And then completely discard it when it wasn't the answer they were looking for.

      1. Rich 11 Silver badge

        Re: Why would the police ask you for your expert opinion

        Because they were taking their lead from the politicians?

    3. jonathanb Silver badge

      Re: The police are as bad

      Would the ISP know the MAC addresses of devices connected to the LAN? You are not going to connect an xbox directly to the internet, you connect it via a router of some description. Phones might get connected directly to the internet, but they have an IMEI number that could be used to identify the owner.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: The police are as bad

        I'm fairly certain that my telco has been inside my adsl router via their maintenence backdoor - they conceivably have been able to map my devices, or just sniff all my local ipv6 packets. i suppose i have to consider throwing DD-WRT on to my adsl modem/router one year.

        Some generic chinese phones on ebay used to have an imei of all zeros, not sure if they actually worked in the 'free world'

        1. Jamie Jones Silver badge
          Stop

          No MACS to be seen here. Was: Re: The police are as bad

          Unless your computer is connected directly to the ISP via ethernet, its network card MAC never leaves the house. (And if you do connect via ethernet, it has to be 'native' and not some PPPoE setup)

          Even if you don't use any sort of wan facing nat/router modem, if you connect via ADSL or via cable, your outgoing connections will not use your pc MAC. The 'virtual interface' created to tunnel the connection may have a 'virtual MAC' but that's not the same. In the case of cable, the cable modem will have its own MAC which is what some cable-isps use to authenticate you.

          TL;DR: Even if you don't use a NAT router/modem your computers MAC address is never likely to be 'leaked' anywhere unless on (say) a corporate network or maybe a student/university network. So MAC tracing for home users is a silly thing to think useful - and that's even before you get into how easy it is to spoof MAC

          1. Anonymous Cowherder

            Re: No MACS to be seen here. Was: The police are as bad

            The mac address is persistent on a device, the multiple IP addresses it or the router it attaches to are assigned are not persistent which is the point I was making to the police. Two xboxes may have at one time connected to the internet via the same IP address, both could later have been nicked, if the police wanted to use the IP address to identify them then it wouldn't work. If they could cross reference this against MAC addresses they might have a chance of identifying it.

            There isn't an easy way of identifying a stolen device if the owner hadn't already taken down its serial number, imei number or scrawled "pRoperTy of Doug" in tippex on it. I was asked who they could identify them via IP, I tried to steer them in a way that may help.

      2. Anonymous Cowherder

        Re: The police are as bad

        I did mention this, along with NATing, private/public IP addresses.... which is why I was stressing to them that the MAC addresses, wireless & wired were better to use as an identifier than an IP address. An IP address on its own is meaningless.

      3. hplasm
        Facepalm

        Re: You are not going to connect an xbox directly to the internet

        Really...?

        Er, XBox owners...

  12. ACx

    So it looks like spineless Clegg is u-turning again. What a shock. I wonder what the lib dems were offered this time? Use of the reclining chair?

    1. Crisp

      Re: I wonder what the lib dems were offered this time?

      Lubricant?

  13. Velv
    Black Helicopters

    Government spying ...

    ... is only illegal if they get caught.

    Don't for one minute think that the black helicopter brigade don't have ways to track "key suspects".

    Anything being considered by parliament just makes it possible for the evidence to be used in a court of law.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Government spying ...

      quote "just makes it possible for the evidence to be used in a court of law."

      That'd be great if the snooping was intended to be used in court, however the current problems are that the large amount of snooping that is done can never be mentioned in court, as otherwise the defence would have the right to view all the intercepts. So it's purely used for spooks, and I suppose some crumbs are lent to the police - provided they don't actually use this intercept stuff as 'evidence'

      All we're talking about it's just background 'evidence', that is never shown to the judicial processes and therefore doesn't really exist?

  14. Robin Bradshaw
    FAIL

    Not going to happen

    Tracability of IP addresses will never happen, if it did your ISP wouldn't be able to charge you through the nose for a fixed IP for your home server.

    1. Dr Wadd

      Re: Not going to happen

      I've just changed ISP to Plusnet, with them there is a single one-off charge of a fiver to get a fixed IP, I was actually surprised at just how reasonable that was.

    2. Dazed and Confused

      Re: Not going to happen

      A&A will give you blocks of IP addresses, you can have IPv4 and/or IPv6. Happily lent me an extra block the other day to do some testing.

  15. Steve Brooks

    Damn these problems that keep popping up unexpectedaly, oh if only the interent powers that be didn't change the way they address computers on a network every other day, oh hang on thats right they don't, they been using the same system since the internet started, and NOW they realise the have a problem, just before we all switch to IPV6, lol.

    1. Jamie Jones Silver badge
      FAIL

      Re: Steve Brooks

      Not true. NAT and DHCP are relatively new to the internet. Before them, every system had a static IP address, even if it was not permanently connected.

      On dialup/broadband, changing your IP would cause your service to stop working.

      On fixed networks, you could only change your IP to an unused one that falls within the range allocated to your lan.

  16. Ben Norris

    The problem with IP addresses is not in identifying the user. Normal people's poor understanding of computing is open to massive abuse as we have seen with media companies harrassing end users with no proof. A list of IPs is not evidence, it is completely open to tampering or total fabrication as well as hacking or spoofing. Even a signed log (which is rarely done) is only as trustworthy as whoever owns the box. The idea that if data came from a computer it must be correct and unrefutable needs to be drummed out of the legal system before you can put in place any fair mechanism.

  17. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Don't be a fool

    There is nothing wrong with authorities using appropriate methods to provide national security. There is no God given right to privacy on the internet or with phone conversations. Who came up with that false belief? Almost any bloke can monitor phone conversations or e-mail contents. Is this a revelation to the naive?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Don't be a fool

      Theres no god given right, but we've established repeatably with case-law based on the human right of privacy for correspondence that uk gov does tend to have been rather over-snoopy on communications in the past. With meaningful safeguards, like - shudder - the French have , we ought to be able to snoop proportionately for nat sec purposes, and maybe use half of the gchq domestic intercept product for real policing, getting away from "heresay" &" we never snoop" absurdities.

  18. dephormation.org.uk
    Facepalm

    New Legislation?

    Outlawing IPv4 devices, CGNAT, NAT, VPNs, proxies, and MAC cloning...?

    Meanwhile, necessitating mandatory registration of all IP enabled devices and associated DHCP IP address assignments... including all portable devices brought into the country, IP entabled tellies, cars, fridges, CCTV, etc etc.

    That should keep the Home Office tied up for years...

  19. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I'm No Expert...

    ... but does this mean that the government are going to ban VPNs & Tor? How does it effect free wi-fi hotspots (even the pizza shop I work in offers this!)? Does it mean that either each device will have to be registered & logged before you start using free wi-fi? If your next door neightbour uses your wi-fi either with or without your knowledge would you get prosecuted? Will each person in your household have their own unique ID number? How far will the government go with this?

  20. Marcus Fil
    Happy

    RE: I'm No Expert...

    How far would the government go with this ..if reality didn't get in the way? How far the government will practicably get with this ..well, is a femtometre a valid unit of measure?

  21. John Smith 19 Gold badge
    Happy

    Did anyone like the idea of..

    The Queen herself doing this work?

    Slipping into her private network test lab behind the Throne Room for a spot of stress testing and protocol analysis?

    But it looks like they have managed to push it a few more years out.

    1. Dazed and Confused

      Re: Did anyone like the idea of..

      I'd give her a better chance than Clegg, or May or the rest of the crown down in the Palace of Westminster.

  22. Frank Fisher
    Big Brother

    This is all about finding a use for ID cards

    Mandatory authentication - the european commission have been touting it since the early 90s. Double win for them - they get their tracking, and they get a 'need' for ID cards.

  23. Scott 26
    Thumb Down

    Whereas on the other side of the world....

    In NZ, it is about to get easier for the spooks :(

    http://techliberty.org.nz/govt-proposes-gcsb-control-over-nz-communications-in-new-tics-bill/

  24. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    /32

    Well they can try to track me, but with a /32 & 4.2 billion addresses, I'm going to an address a second before changing to another and never use an address twice.

    1. Jamie Jones Silver badge

      Re: /32

      Ummmm. They'd just trace your /32 and then ask you who (other than yourself) in the household has access to any of those other 4.2 billion addresses.....

  25. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    My VPN gives me .co.uk IP access from the USA

    And I live in neither country.

    Numpties

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