[arin-tech-discuss] SWIP and GeoIP

Drake Pallister drake.pallister at duraserver.com
Mon Oct 14 01:33:26 EDT 2013

Hello There...

Let me toss in my 2 cents about GeoIP.

If that GeoIP service has been contacted and made aware of the issue, but they 
have not revised the methods in which they assign a location to an IP number, 
then that specific GeoIP service isn't doing what they need to do to correct 
their incorrect data.  There are many GeoIP information services, some are 
free and some are paid. If one is doing a bad job, then I recommending using 
another. Compare it to an automobile repair shop. If one mechanic keeps doing 
a substandard job or cheats you, then you find another repair shop who does a 
good job and is honest. Some IP end users want their IP(s) to be 
geographically correct and some don't care. Some in fact, want "No" Geo info 
published about their IP(s), yet others intentionally want incorrect Geo info 
to show up. Of course, the IP should at least show what region of the world it 
is located in and that is easy enough to do by looking at which RIR 
allocated/assigned the IP(s) to what entity and their location. In the case of 
an ISP, when distributing IPs to private residences, I don't believe the ISP 
should be pursued to contribute any closer to target Geo info than a city or 
town for residential IPs. The same would go for businesses. However, let's put 
it in writing so to speak, by the end user of the IP number(s) submitting a 
checklist to their ISP (their immediate upstream), detailing what depth of 
location information they want released. None, Country, State, City, or Exact 
Street Address. This will not be practical with Cellular devices 4G/WiMax, 
etc. though the cellular provider can usually determine within 10 feet of the 
device bound to the IP. However, mobile devices are moving. Ok, maybe another 
checklist to the service provider from the device owner (the IP assignee--  
most often by dhcp-- unless you have a static IP smart phone) and the depth of 
detail permissions checklist (which can of course be electronic and automated) 
would in effect work the same as such a Geo Info depth permissions checklist 
for land-based endpoints. A cellular carrier would likely want to charge for 
real time Geo info, as they do in providing some of their "Track my kid's 
location" added features.

Most often all AOL IPs show up as Virginia where AOL is/was located. Some 
other IP services are tunneled from elsewhere a hundred or a thousand miles 
away. A corporate VPN might even yield you a different country, because a VPN 
is a tunnel.

We could compare this GeoIP thing to Telephones and callerID. But then a PRI 
circuit can publish any callerID. The most accurate phone number caller ID is 
delivered via ANI.

I am just making suggestions and comparisons here because I don't have a 
really good answer except that you should look towards the accuracy of your 
GeoIP info provider and compare them to other services. Some will be more 
accurate and some will target different levels of records (where available) 
for providing their customer with the best info that you are paying them for.

If I had the smarts, I might rewrite a backward-compatible version of the IP 
protocol or the next higher OSI layer (TCP/UDP protocol) to include a space in 
the packet or datagram header that is for GEO to be inserted along with SRC, 
DST, TTL, and so on.

But definitely take up your issue with your GeoIP data provider first. Maybe 
they're already working on an improvement that they are about to start using.

Best regards,

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Brian Rak" <brak at gameservers.com>
To: <arin-tech-discuss at arin.net>
Sent: Tuesday, October 08, 2013 10:41 AM
Subject: [arin-tech-discuss] SWIP and GeoIP

> We have a customer who operates VPN services with us.  They have their own 
> ARIN OrgID, and we would like to be able to reassign all their IP addresses 
> to that organization (so that they can receive any abuse reports directly, 
> rather then having to relay them).
> They have reported to us that various GeoIP providers are using the location 
> of the ARIN contact to determine where an IP is located. The customer would 
> very much prefer that the location of the IPs match the datacenter's 
> location, rather then the customer's location.
> Does anyone have suggestions for handling this properly?  Looking at the 
> data returned by WHOIS, it seems the only way they're going to be able to 
> specify a location is by creating a separate organization and contact for 
> each datacenter.  Is that the best solution here?
> _______________________________________________
> arin-tech-discuss mailing list
> arin-tech-discuss at arin.net
> http://lists.arin.net/mailman/listinfo/arin-tech-discuss

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