Detecting ISP Throttling

ISPs have recently become very aggressive towards their customers. They’ve been blocking or altering traffic to prevent you from using specific programs or protocols. Google’s Senior Policy Director recently stated that they’re developing tools to allow people to detect ISP interference. A couple other groups have been building tools as well: The Network Neutrality Squad just released the second beta of their Network Measurement Agent. The tool currently detects spoofed packets by monitoring the round trip time of the connection; early reset packets will have lower than average RTT. If you want to go more in depth, the EFF has published a guide for using Wireshark to do the detection. We’ve even heard rumors of people building tools to tunnel a session inside of one that looks completely different.

[photo: nrkbeta]

7 thoughts on “Detecting ISP Throttling

  1. So after you figure out that you’re being throttled, is there anything you can do? This just seems like an exercise in futility to me. You can call up your ISP all day and tell them that Google says that they are blocking your packets and they’ll tell you it’s better for you.

    While I appreciate the ingenuity in all this, I’d much rather see constantly evolving software that enables me to actually get around throttling instead of simply tell me what I can’t do anymore.

  2. As an individual there’s much you can do is gather evidence the ISP aren’t providing their customers what the customers paid for. In the event the EFF can’t make use of it send it to Ralph Nader after Ralph looses in November. Ralph has been somewhat effective in helping the little guy over the years.

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