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RXN Communications offers Internet Access to RXN Customers. The following are answers to Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) about the Internet and Internet Access. Please direct any additional questions you may have to support@rxn.com .

RXN Internet FAQ - Q uestion and A nswer Table of Contents:


1. What is the Internet?
2. How can I learn more about the Internet?
3. Who organizes the Internet?
4. What does the Internet look like?
5. How busy is the Internet today?
6. How can I learn more about Site Security on the Internet?
7. How can I learn more about Security Policies on the Internet?
8. How can I learn more about Computer Viruses on the Internet?
9. How can I learn more about Cryptography on the Internet?
10. How can I learn more about Smurf or Fraggle Amplifier Defense?
11. How can I keep my own computer safe on the internet?

12. Return to the Previous Menu.
13. Return to the RXN Communications Home Page.

Q 1. What is the Internet?
A "The Internet is a collection of thousands of networks linked by a common set of technical protocols which make it possible for users of any one of the networks to communicate with or use the services located on any of the other networks." -- from RFC 1594 FYI Q/A - for New Internet Users .

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Q 2. How can I learn more about the Internet?
A Although the best way to learn about the Internet may be to explore it first-hand, the following documents can provide a good overview:
RFC 1118 - The Hitchhikers Guide to the Internet
RFC 1207 - Experienced Internet User Questions
RFC 1325 - New Internet User Questions
RFC 1392 - Internet Users' Glossary
RFC 1462 - What is the Internet?
RFC 1594 - New Internet User Questions (Updated)
RFC 1935 - What is the Internet, Anyway?
RFC 1941 - Frequently Asked Questions for Schools
RFC 1983 - Internet Users' Glossary (Updated)
RFC 2235 - Hobbes' Internet Timeline
Charles Spurgeon's Network Reading List
Jean Polly's Surfing the INTERNET

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Q 3. Who organizes the Internet?
A Everybody and nobody could both be the correct answer! The following organizations attempt to organize various aspects of the Internet:

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Q 4. What does the Internet look like?
A Several attempts have been made to visually represent the Internet by graphing various performance attributes or measures.
Martin Dodge's An Atlas of Cyberspaces
The Geography of Cyberspace Directory
The MIDS Internet Weather Report

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Q 5. How busy is the Internet today?
A Several attempts have been made to measure the instantaneous latency, or delay, on the internet.
Current Internet Latencies - The MIDS Internet Weather Report
Current Packet Loss at Major Name Servers - Clear Ink's Netcopter

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Q 6. How can I learn more about Site Security on the Internet?
A Site Security has, unfortunately, become an important concern on the internet. The following documents review basic security concerns:
RFC 2196 - Site Security Handbook
CIAC-2304 Vulnerabilities of Facsimilie Machines and Digital Copiers
CIAC-2305 UNIX Incident Guide How to Detect an Intrusion
CIAC-2307 Electronic Resources for Security Related Information
CIAC-2308 Securing Internet Information Servers
CIAC-2316 Securing X Windows
CIAC-2317 Windows NT Managers Guide
CIAC-2318 IRC On Your Dime
The following sites offer additional Security information:
Australian Computer Emergency Response Team (AUSCERT)
Center for Education and Research in Information Assurance and Security (CERIAS) formerly COAST
Carnegie Mellon Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT)
Computer Security Resource Clearinghouse (CSRC)
Forum of Incident Response and Security Teams (FIRST)
Data Fellows Corporation enterprise security site.
LLNL Computer Security Technology Center (CSTC)
LLNL Computer Incident Advisory Capability (CIAC)
LLNL Department of Energy (DOE) Information Security
System Administration, Networking, and Security (SANS)

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Q 7. How can I learn more about Security Policies on the Internet?
A Sites on the internet need to create a coherent Internet-specific information security policy. The NIST Computer Security Resource Clearinghouse provides an Internet Security Policy: A Technical Guide as a starting point.

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Q 8. How can I learn more about Computer Viruses on the Internet?
A Computer Viruses have, unfortunately, become an important concern on the internet. The following sites offer additional information:
Symantec Anti-Virus Research Center
Data Fellows Corporation enterprise security site.
US Federal Computer Incident Response Capability (FedCIRC)
McAfee Virus Clinic
Crispen's Six Anti-Virus Rules

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Q 9. How can I learn more about Cryptography on the Internet?
A Cryptography has many applications on the internet today, from the protection of documents to the securing of online transactions. The following sites offer additional information:
Handbook of Applied Cryptography

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Q 10. How can I learn more about Smurf or Fraggle Amplifier Defense?
A A good summary can be found at the Internet Security Systems site, cached here on 14 mar 2004:

Amplifier Defense

In order to prevent your site from "bouncing" smurf/fraggle packets, you
must turn off "directed broadcasts" on the router leading to the target
subnet. A directed broadcast looks something like 192.0.2.255, which would
tell the router leading to the 192.0.2.x subnet to broadcast the packet to
all devices on that subnet.

Cisco

Use the command "no ip directed-broadcast"

Proteon

Configure "disable directed-broadcast"

Nortel/Bay

Configure an incorrect static ARP address for broadcast address

WinNT

Configure an incorrect static ARP address for the broadcast address.
Example: arp -s 192.0.2.255 00-00-00-00-00-00

Linux

Configure an incorrect static ARP address for the broadcast address.
Example: arp -s 192.0.2.255 00:00:00:00:00:00

If using a host as a router, then the simplest method is to create a
static mapping for the ARP table that forces packets directed at the
broadcast address to be sent to a non-existent MAC address (such as
000000000000).

Most routers today allow for firewall-style packet filters. These can also
be used to deny access to the broadcast address.

Another defense would be to disable response by hosts. According to the
host requirements RFC, an ICMP Echo Request sent to the a broadcast
address MAY be discarded.

WinNT, Win98, Win2k

By default, these do not respond to pings sent to the broadcast address.

FreeBSD

After 2.2.5, it does not respond

NetBSD

sysctl -w net.inet.ip.directed-broadcast=0

AIX 4.x

no -o bcastping=0 # disable bcast ping responses (default)

Solaris

Add to /etc/rc2.d/S69inet.startup the line ndd -set /dev/ip
ip_respond_to_echo_broadcast 0 

ipfw 

ipfwadm -I -a deny -P icmp -D 192.0.2.255 -S 0/0 0 8

Additionally, the following approaches can be used:

BSD/OS 4.1

within /etc/rc.local:
echo -n "icmp broadcast: "; sysctl -w net.inet.icmp.bmcastecho=0

Catalyst 2950T-24

enable




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Q 11. How can I keep my own computer safe on the internet?
A Sadly, today, it takes work and diligence to keep your computer safe on the internet. Here are some basic steps...

Anti-Virus Software: It is important to have a current, updated, anti-virus software scanner running. Many anti-virus software solutions are available. All attempt to prevent virial scripts and programs from doing damage to your computer and files. One example is Grisoft AVG Anti-Virus.

Anti-Spybot Software: It is important to have a current, updated, anti-spybot software scanner running. Many anti-spybot software solutions are available. One example is Spybot Search and Destroy.

Firewall: It is important to have a current, updated firewall in place. Many hardware and software firewalls are available. If a hardware firewall is not available through your router, use a software firewall frequently bundled with your OS.

Current Operating System Patches: It is important to have a current, updated patches applied to your operating system. Stay up to date with all patches and updates!

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DISCLAIMER: This FAQ is provided as is without any expressed or implied warranties. While every effort has been taken to ensure the accuracy of the information contained in this FAQ, the maintainer assumes no responsibility for errors or omissions, or for damages resulting from the use, or misuse, of the information contained herein.
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hits since 24 Jul 1997 - copyright (c) 1997-2012 RXN Communications - webmaster@rxn.com - Revised 5 Nov 2012