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Letter

Ottawa, 20 January 2012

Our Reference: 545613

BY EMAIL

Mr. Ken Thompson
Director and Counsel Copyright and Broadband Law
Rogers Communications Inc.
333 Bloor Street, East
Toronto, ON M4W 1G9
ken.thompson@rci.rogers.com

 

Dear Mr. Thompson:

Re:  File 545613,
Internet Traffic Management Practice (“ITMP”),
Section 36 of the Telecommunications Act, S.C. 1993, c. 38, as amended (“Act”), and Paragraphs 126 and 127 of Telecom Regulatory Policy CRTC 2009-657 (“TRP CRTC 2009-657”)

I am writing with respect to the above noted file that was transferred to the Compliance and Enforcement Sector by the Telecommunications Sector on October 27, 2011.

Compliance and Enforcement Sector staff has been reviewing this file since its referral to our sector.  Based on the preliminary results of our ongoing investigation, Commission staff is of the belief that Rogers Communications Inc. (“Rogers”) applies a technical ITMP to unidentified traffic using default peer-to-peer (“P2P”) ports. On the basis of our evidence to date, any traffic from an unidentified time-sensitive application making use of P2P ports will be throttled resulting in noticeable degradation of such traffic.  Enclosed please find a summary of our evidence. Full details, if necessary can be obtained by request through my office.

As you know, prior Commission approval is required pursuant to section 36 of the Act, as described at paragraphs 126 and 127 of TRP CRTC 2009-657, for implementing a technical ITMP that results in:

  • noticeable degradation to time-sensitive traffic, or
  • the slowing of non-time-sensitive traffic to the extent that it amounts to blocking the content and therefore controlling the content and influencing the meaning and purpose of the telecommunication.

Within two weeks, I look forward to you either presenting us with a rebuttal of our evidence or providing us with a plan to come into compliance with the Act. Failure to provide a meaningful rebuttal or an effective plan will result in my recommendation to Commissioners to hold a show-cause hearing.  I look forward to your response by 12:00 pm, February 3, 2012.

Sincerely,

 

Andrea Rosen

Chief Compliance and Enforcement Officer

 

Summary of Evidence

File 545613

This attachment summarizes evidence pursuant to the above noted file, which is an ongoing investigation of Rogers Communications Inc.’s (“Rogers”) Internet Traffic Management Practice (“ITMP”) by the Compliance and Enforcement Sector. 

The Compliance and Enforcement Sector’s ongoing investigation includes examining a number of key performance indicators (“KPIs”), such as:

  • TCP resets, TCP syn/acks, connection status
  • Latency in milliseconds
  • TCP Window size
  • Packet loss
  • Packets per second
  • Average packet sizes
  • Retransmission of packets
  • Dropped connections
  • Active connections/sessions
  • Upstream available bandwidth limits
  • Packet sequence numbers
  • Other TCP and UDP traffic statistics and analysis.

As Cisco is Rogers’ vendor,1 the Compliance and Enforcement Sector had and continues to have tests conducted against information from the website of Cisco Systems, Inc. (“Cisco”).  Preliminary testing results indicate that unidentified traffic using default P2P ports, as identified in the Cisco SCA BB Protocol Reference Guide,2 is throttled.  Such results further indicate that:

  • default P2P ports for TCP traffic are subject to throttling, except port 6969, and
  • until December 20, 2011, all default P2P ports for UDP traffic were subject to throttling.

Compliance and Enforcement Sector staff also notes Rogers’ disclosure of its network management policy, which indicates that an application may not attain full speed if encrypted and not using a standard port for the application/protocol in question.3   Moreover, while Rogers has stated that misclassification occurs in only a few cases,4 staff notes that Cisco identifies various applications that may have been misclassified.5


1 Rogers letter dated September 27, 2011, at 3.

2 Cisco SCA BB Protocol Reference Guide: <http://www.cisco.com/en/US/docs/cable/serv_exch/serv_control/broadband_app/
protocol_ref_guide/protocol_ref_guide.html
> [Cisco SCA BB Protocol Reference Guide].

3 Rogers Network Management Policy: <http://www.rogers.com/web/content/network_management> [Rogers Network Management Policy].

4 Rogers letter, supra note 1 at 3.

5 Cisco Service Control Application for Broadband Protocol Pack Notes, available online: <http://www.cisco.com/en/US/docs/cable/serv_exch/serv_control/broadband_app/
protocol_pack/PP_Note_current.html
> [Cisco PP Notes].