Thursday, September 25, 2008

UnitedLayer COO: Giving Access to InterCage is an Issue of Ethics

Angela Gunn writes on BetaNews:

Richard Donaldson, COO of co-location provider UnitedLayer, knows that his new client InterCage is unpopular. It's just that he's not sure that hosting botnets, malware, and spam services deserves a lifetime of incarceration.

Because that is, Donaldson says, effectively what it means to cut off InterCage (a.k.a., Atriva) from the net community in this day and age.

"Data centers are becoming the information plants for the information age," said Donaldson, whose firm re-admitted Emil Kacperski's notorious service to the land of the net-living after what the COO termed "challenging and lively discussion," not to mention the actual pulling of plugs on InterCage's stinkiest servers.

But ethically, he doesn't believe that InterCage's past offenses -- which include serving as a major source of botnets, malware, spam and other net-junk -- merit the ultimate punishment, though he points out that InterCage may have already self-administered its own doom, since it "may not be in business much longer" with its net reputation in tatters.

There's no Internet body that enforces penalties for suspected evildoers; neither blacklists nor blocks have the force of law, and the law itself is an international patchwork on the subject. But when company after company dropped relations with InterCage in the wake of multiple reports documenting its shady dealings, suddenly UnitedLayer (which previously had a co-location agreement with the troubled firm, and prides itself on its "technocratic oath" to Do No Technical Harm) was the last firm willing to work with it. That essentially gave Donaldson's people the power to send InterCage dark or, as he chose to do, stick InterCage in a sandbox and watch it like a liability lawyer watches a hyperactive two-year-old.

More here.


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