Responsible ISPs in Latvia

Earlier in the year I wrote about the German ISP Association’s scheme to remove the economic disincentive for ISPs to inform their customers of botnet infections on their PCs by providing a centrally-funded helpdesk. In Latvia a different approach has been taken: providing a “responsible ISP” mark that consumer networks can use on their websites and other promotional materials. To be entitled to use the mark an ISP must satisfy three conditions:

  • When notified by the Latvian hotline for child abuse imagery of illegal material on web hosting services, remove it;
  • When notified by the Latvian national CERT of a computer infected by malware, inform the relevant customer;
  • Provide content filtering services to customers who request them.

Interestingly, Latvia report the same problem as Germany: that if an ISP contacts a customer and recommends installing anti-virus or other security software, this is sometimes interpreted as a sales call rather than a security warning. The same solution has been adopted – to refer customers to advice provided by an independent third party, in this case the National CERT.

By Andrew Cormack

I'm Chief Regulatory Advisor at Jisc, responsible for keeping an eye out for places where our ideas, services and products might raise regulatory issues. My aim is to fix either the product or service, or the regulation, before there's a painful bump!

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