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Open Standards Everywhere

The Internet has been built on open, freely available standards with the Web being one of the most successful and widely adopted ways to use the Internet; however, there is relatively little in terms of functioning, publicly accessible demonstration servers, environments, or documentation that shows clearly how to set up a website using a comprehensive set of the open standards, security settings, and privacy practices supported by the Internet Society. In fact, website operators who would like to implement technologies such as DNSSEC, IPv6, and TLS 1.3, while adopting and adhering to privacy policies that embody best practices long promoted by the Internet Society, currently must gather the information about how to do these things from a wide range of sources, and assemble and deploy the various required components on their own.

What Will This Project Address?

This project will demonstrate and document the operational details of implementing open standards and best practices for secure web servers, and translate them into easy-to-access and use resources that allow others to do the same. It specifically targets small-to-medium sized organizations and enterprises, which make up a large portion of the web ecosystem but often do not have the resources or expertise available to easily implement the latest open protocols and best practices. Reference implementations of web servers that reflect the Internet Society’s long-time support of open standards will serve as a resource and model for others. Equally important will be repositories of guides and tutorials in a variety of formats that describe how others may undertake similar deployments. And, to further promote adoption of these approaches, this project anticipates engaging with many communities and channels related to website development.

Our Work in 2020

By the end of 2020:

  • The project will have deployed four reference servers using two major open source web servers, each with and without a Content Delivery Network (CDN), reflecting common approaches in the target audiences.
  • Easy-to-understand resources will not only include specific items such as webpages with step-by-step tutorials, but also assets such as video screencasts showing the precise configuration steps required. These resources will include links to testing tools and environments, as well as more details on specific standards, protocols, and practices.
  • Beyond publishing documentation on Internet Society servers, they will be promoted by publishing them on platforms such as Github, StackExchange, and other community forums as well as by outreach to specific conferences and communities who are likely to adopt them.

The specifics of the reference implementations and documentation will be updated over the longer term to ensure they remain relevant and current as, for example, new versions of web server software and protocols become available.

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