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Counteracting Discrimination against Network Traffic

Report ID:
July 2007
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End users, edge networks, content providers, and service providers alike all need effective ways to counteract \emph{traffic discrimination}---the selective (mis)treatment of packets as they flow through the Internet. However, preventing discrimination, or even detecting ongoing discrimination, is difficult in practice. Instead, our solution (which we call \emph{surelinks}) forces the discriminator to introduce more easily detectable loss and delay, and then moves traffic away from offending paths. Surelinks combine three techniques: encryption of aggregate traffic between edge nodes, multipath routing to circumvent performance problems, and stealth probing for accurate measurements in an adversarial setting. Experiments with our prototype system, implemented in the Click router, demonstrate that surelinks have practical overhead comparable to destination-based forwarding.

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