Ok, so would we take on Wikileaks DNS at this point?

So after the big clusterf*** with easyDNS being falsely blamed for taking down wikileaks, somebody posts the inevitable question “Would easyDNS take wikileaks DNS“? and from there makes what I think is a dubious extension: by NOT taking them we’re doing the same thing as “taking them down”.

What I find dubious about all this is it seems that we are being taken to task for this and held under a more rigorous scrutiny around this incident, than the company that actually did take them down.

Having said that, earlier today when after seeing YET ANOTHER BAD TWEET that wikileaks had setup wikileaks.ch on easyDNS, I called my systems group and told them I wanted the following conditions in place, so consider this:

An Open Letter to Wikileaks Regarding DNS Hosting

If they were to put their DNS here, then this is what we’d want to have in place:

  1. An open channel of communication where we could communicate with their IT people 24/7, especially going into a weekend.
  2. We’d prefer to be the domain registrar for the domain so we could have control over the nameserver delegations and would be able to move them around on-on-the-fly, as per the tactics I outlined in my previous posts about DOS attacks and DNS. Keeping in mind we are a non-US based registrar, we would adhere to Canadian law with respect to takedown requests, not DMCA or other US laws.
  3. We’d want the domain to be one within a TLD that supports realtime updates, for the same reason.
  4. We would want to initially limit their delegation to our nameservers deployed out on Prolexic, which is basically the most DOS-resistant stuff we have, possibly complimented with some ad-hoc standalone nodes.

That’s basically how we would want to play it. Again, this is all hypothetical.

[ Note to Wikileaks: if you’re reading this and want to add a domain after hours this weekend, email me direct markjr [at] you know what (and it’s not everydns.net πŸ™‚ ]

29 thoughts on “Ok, so would we take on Wikileaks DNS at this point?”

  1. XDS says:

    wow , ballsy! and sorry for any backlash to your company if you truly are not affiliated with everydns

  2. John says:

    http://www.everydns.com/ is owned by Dyn, Inc. It’s not hard to figure out folks : it’s right there on their front page, including text related to the attack on the right edge.

    Dyn’s physical address : @ bottom of https://www.dyndns.com/about/legal/privacy.html

    EasyDns : https://web.easydns.com/contactus.php

    On the face of it, I would say these are not the same folks, yes?

    Mark has a right to be ticked off : [ snipped URL – we had to disable mailpress for now ]

    when so-called ‘journalists’ can’t even differentiate between a Canadian company, and the U.S. company hosting who actually hosted the DNS.

    Geez. I’m glad I have a couple of accounts, and am supporting Mark while he’s supporting my companies. His thoughts on Ddos mitigation are also worth a read. (linked in his blog posts)

  3. Andrew says:

    To be honest, I (a loyal easydns customer) SAW “easydns” while skimming the Times, where in fact they wrote EVERYDNS.NET in the December 3rd story. It was the less prestigious blog on the 4th, The Lede, that messed up, probably in confusion with what was reported wrong elsewhere. I was shocked and, like the reporters should be doing, came here for an explanation. The times should make a correction post haste!

    In any event — kudos for being willing to take on Wikileaks’ mess. It’s the tough cases that need you guys, where you really earn the money/business of everyone. — ad

  4. Matt says:

    This is great. Thank you for taking the high road and sticking your neck out like this. It truely speaks volumes about the integrity and testicular fortitude of your company. Consider me a new customer.

  5. Mr. TRex says:

    I’ve never even heard of you guys until y’all got caught up in the rash of bad reporting. And while I do feel nationalistic (jingoistic?) compulsion to “buy American” as an American, your level-headed posts, Mark, through the storm has won my consumer loyalty. I have no need of your services just of yet, but I anticipate so in the next year or so. If/when that happens, count on me transferring registration. Cheers.

  6. Ben Wiles says:

    Nice to read. I read for 7-8 hours today before I managed to wade through all the false accusations towards EasyDNS.

    My hat certainly goes off to you, and a serious consideration for my next DNS solution.

    All the best.

  7. Gavin says:

    If this does happen I’d add to your plan “A donation box for contributing to efforts to keep wikileaks up.”

    I’d happily send some money to cover any additional hassle and costs.

  8. Andrew says:

    So which TLD that supports realtime updates that you would recommend?

  9. kevin lake says:

    I saw the story on Google top of wikileaks news.

    I am 50 year old ex republican wondering what has happened to our government.

    I never write to a blogs, but in my heart and head I know what you are doing is a good thing.

    when this is over history will mentions names of those on the side of right, and your name will be at the top.

  10. SANDRA GARCIA says:

    THANK YOU FOR HELPING.

  11. Evan says:

    Will keep your company in mind for future services. This is great.

  12. Anastas says:

    A very applaudable move. It’s people like you who make a difference.

  13. Awesome. I think that the news is taking some time to propagate across Twitter and Facebook. The IRC irc.anonops.net is down (big surprise!) so noting that EasyDNS is a “wrong target” can’t be posted.

    Damn, I wish I had some domains I needed registered or hosted. πŸ™‚

  14. hey, good to see there are still Internet companies with balls and consciousness.

    Great move!

    …bookmarked, in case my mainstream domain registrar should upset me one day… πŸ˜‰

  15. ICE says:

    Finally someone with enough guts to do what is right.

    you are now part of a history….

  16. Will says:

    Hi,

    Yeah I was like “what the f***, why would a Canadian company be involved in this mess, made no sense!”.

    Canadians are smarter than that. πŸ˜‰

    Take Care,

    Will

    PS: Tabbing in the reply box jumps from Name to search instead of email. πŸ™

  17. Serpy says:

    With all respect.. you guys rock! Keep wining the fight for freedom.

  18. svxs says:

    Very noble decision!

    Although EasyDNS received a lot of bad press from the inaccurate reports (and the mislead reporters, too), you’ve proven to be a particularly well-mannered internet solutions company.

    I’m impressed! EasyDNS’ll be the registrar I use in the future.

  19. paul says:

    Good for you. Good luck with the hosting.

  20. Roger says:

    To Mark Jeftovic,

    While uninvolved with these recent shenanigans, I must salute and praise you for handling it well.

  21. Dylan says:

    Mark, after reading your blog a few days ago I tweeted a Guardian editor who had repeated the error that easydns had booted Wikileaks – so did a few others and it was corrected quickly.

    Also, congratulations to you for turning a pig’s ear into a silk purse and supporting transparency on the web at the same time. Inspired.

  22. I Approve says:

    If only more more companies had such moral courage! Amid the noisy media storm, you made a reasonable and astute decision. I applaud this rare example of leadership.

  23. Jason says:

    Prolexic is a US based company. So, if you use their services you ARE under DMCA or other US laws.

    • Mark Jeftovic says:

      Prolexic is now owned and controlled by Philippines-based IPVG. If the US servers become an issue, we can remove them from the pool for wikileaks.*

  24. Geoff says:

    Well done!

    Read about you on Wired…

  25. Barry says:

    I am not an activist or anything like that, and while I am against what wikileaks has been doing I would not shoot myself in the foot by threatening to pull my DNS hosting from you as punishment. But, I would point out item 13 in your own terms of service (which you certainly don’t need me to paste here). I would consider that wikileaks is “soliciting” the performance of illegal acts. In this case, it encouraged Pfc. Manning to break the law. So I believe that wikileaks is in violation of your terms of service and wonder why they would merit an exception, and how you determine when to selectively enforce your TOS.

    [Feel free to point out exactly what wikileaks has done which is prohibited by law. All indications are that this episode followed a long tradition of whistleblowing (i.e. The Pentagon Papers and The New York Times, et al) I’m sure if there was a clear cut violation to be cited, they’d have been charged with it by now. While they are reaching now and trying to “prove” Pfc Manning colluded with Wikileaks, it’s a stretch (when in doubt, charge “conspiracy” which basically requires no proof). But since wikileaks themselves are not here for DNS, this is largely an academic exercise – if you want to examine selective enforcement of ToS, look at Amazon or Paypal.

    I’m glad you’re not pulling your domains and that we can agree to disagree. ]

  26. Barry says:

    Your ToS does not specify that wl must break the law itself; it specifies that easydns customers must not use the services provided by easyDNS to conduct any business or activity or solicit the performance of any activity that is prohibited by law. Translated, Wikileaks must not … solicit the performance of an activity prohibited by law. If one presumes, as I do, the knowledge that stolen cables would be published on Wikileaks, this is effectively Wikileaks soliciting the performance of Pfc Manning’s theft of classified material (such theft being clearly prohibited by law). To break it down further, the raison d’etre of wikileaks solicited this soldier to perform an illegal act, hence it would be in violation on the terms. Seems pretty clear to me. Where is the error in my logic?

    [ Please show us the section in the wikileaks website which is soliciting the unlawful acts. I don’t really have a lot more to say on this as we’re arguing over a hypothetical and I’ve lost two weeks of my life on this mess – mark ]

  27. GlennN says:

    I tell my daughters almost every day one person can change the world in a small way. Mark — You are changing the world and I for one appreciate your good natured response to this ordeal. Of course I expect there to be many more as the USA goes down by the takedown of what I am used to thinking of as The “American” Freedoms! Please, keep up the good work of keeping your corner of the world free of our American madness.

    You have my thanks, and from the sound of it by keeping a level head you will have made lemons into lemonade. I hope to see the value of EASYDNS stock go thru the roof as a result of your excellent management as so clearly evidenced by your handling of it!

    I don’t know if you have ever heard of EFF.ORG but you might be interested in them as well. — no I don’t work for eff.

    –Glenn N

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