[ppml] Policy Proposal 2006-1: Residential Customer Privacy

Suzanne Woolf Suzanne_Woolf at isc.org
Fri Jan 27 13:22:23 EST 2006

On Fri, Jan 27, 2006 at 09:06:29AM -0600, J Bacher wrote:
> william(at)elan.net wrote:
> > I oppose this policy proposal. The city and state data is not specific
> > enough as to reveal location of the user, but it is very useful for 
> > statistical & geographic analysis purposes.
> Privacy shouldn't be compromised because you or others want demographic 
> information.

If people want to disclose such information, including for the purpose
of aiding research, more power to them. But the argument here isn't
about whether people can disclose the information if they want to--
the policy proposal says "may", not "must", about suppressing the
details. It's about whether they can choose not to disclose it if they
don't want to.

Other people's opinions about whether users *should* want to disclose
their location information-- because it's for a good cause, or because
we don't believe partial information is enough to reveal the user's
location, or because it's easier to find them and tell them when their
machine has been hijacked and their IP address appears in an attack
trace-- are beside the point. I don't think it's up to me or ARIN to
judge William's reasons for wanting the data or Jan's reasons for
preferring to suppress it. They can argue between themselves about
that. The question in front of us is just whether ARIN's rules will
allow for both choices or continue to require disclosure a user may
not want to make.

I have every sympathy with the "research" justification. I've used it
myself, and been very disappointed when data I knew would be useful to
have could not legally be disclosed to me because it was considered
private in the jurisdiction where it was collected. However, that
research interest is not more important than a residential user's
right to obscure their location from whois should they and their ISP
so choose.


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