Media Law Prof Blog

Editor: Christine A. Corcos
Louisiana State Univ.

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Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Routing Internet Transmission Across the Canada-U.S. Border and U.S. Surveillance Activities

Jonathan A. Obar, University of Toronto Faculty of Information, and Michigan State University College of Communication Arts and Sciences, and Andrew Clement, University of Toronto Faculty of Information, have published Internet Surveillance and Boomerang Routing: A Call for Canadian Network Sovereignty.  Here is the abstract.

Preliminary analysis of more than 25,000 traceroutes reveals a phenomenon we call ‘boomerang routing’ whereby Canadian-to-Canadian internet transmissions are routinely routed through the United States. Canadian originated transmissions that travel to a Canadian destination via a U.S. switching centre or carrier are subject to U.S. law - including the USA Patriot Act and FISAA. As a result, these transmissions expose Canadians to potential U.S. surveillance activities – a violation of Canadian network sovereignty.

In the face of this unregulated surveillance of Canadians, the Federal government and internet service providers should re-assert our national network sovereignty and better protect Canadian civil liberties. In what follows, we present boomerang route findings and discuss NSA tracking concerns. We then offer a plan for strengthening Canadian network sovereignty, including: 1) strengthening and enforcement of Canadian privacy law (e.g. PIPEDA), and 2) repatriation of Canadian internet traffic by building more internet exchange points.

Download the paper from SSRN at the link.

http://lawprofessors.typepad.com/media_law_prof_blog/2013/09/routing-internet-transmission-across-the-canada-us-border-and-us-surveillance-activities.html

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