IPv6: Do We Have Liftoff Yet?

June 6th, 2012 by · Leave a Comment

Today is World IPv6 Day again, but this time participants are doing more than testing things for a day.  This time, when they launch the switch stays on.  Or at least it does for those who are ready, which hopefully will be enough to start a tiny little snowball rolling.  What do you think are we there yet?

I’d love to say Ramblings is ready, but we’re still hosted in the Rackspace cloud and hence at the mercy of its underlying infrastructure.  Rackspace hasn’t made a peep on the subject this year, so I think that means no. A move to Amazon’s cloud services wouldn’t help either (besides being more trouble than it’s worth at this time), as they seem to be at a similar stage.

Meanwhile, Interoute’s VP of Development Mark Lewis offers up this morsel just to remind us how much work the industry still has to make IPv6 really fully ready to take over:

“The introduction of IPv6 is the IT equivalent of the move from imperial to metric for measurement; the two can run side by side but aren’t compatible with each other. The introduction of IPv6 will effectively mean that every device, from the mobile phone to the vending machine could become a mole in the office. This puts the onus on organisations to secure and understand these new internet enabled devices that operate within the office walls. From one perspective, the introduction of IPv6 effectively opens a series of new back doors for viruses to sneak through.

“One of the challenges with the introduction of IPv6 is that the de facto control points that secured and audited IPv4 have not been transferred into IPv6. Meaning the industry will have to re-invent the wheel to enable this totally-connected world, where every device can speak to everything else in a secure and well managed way.

“Fixing the security aspect requires an industry effort, looking at how security devices are updated and how organisations are factoring the change into their IT. Organisations need to consider whether their network and security hardware supports IPv6. And then look to formulate plans that facilitate the secure running of IPv4 and IPv6 devices and applications side-by-side. If you consider how ubiquitous IP devices are in the workplace, and the wealth of applications in an average organisation, this will not be an easy task.”

Every device in an IPv6-enabled M2M world will be vulnerable to stuff we seem barely able to defend our IPv4 PCs from?  Yikes, I thought the idea was to make everyone more comfortable with the launch!

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Categories: Internet Traffic

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