What are BGP Routing Records?
Border Gateway Protocol (BGP) is a protocol that allows for the fastest and most efficient routing of internet traffic. The owner of an IPv4 Address subnet asks their upstream internet service provider to route specific IPv4 subnets now smaller than a /24 to route traffic using the best method of delivery. BGP is responsible for assessing all of the available internet routes that data can travel and then choose the best option, which usually means hopping between Autonomous Systems (AS) numbers that represent the upstream internet providers network.
What is an Autonomous System Number (ASN)?
The Internet is a network of thousands of smaller networks that are run by Internet Service Providers, Network Carriers, Telecom Operators, Hosting companies, and thousands of organizations around the world. Each of these networks is essentially a large pool of routers run by a single organization. The ASN is a number that represents an organization’s network that is shared with the rest of the internet community, much like a social security number.
What is the Internet Routing Registry (IRR)?
The Internet Routing Registry (IRR) was created in 1995 during the rise of the commercial internet to replace the NSFNET Backbone Service. The IRR is a distributed routing database development effort to help internet service providers debug, configure, and engineer Internet routing and addressing. The IRR provides a mechanism to help validate BGP announcements and/or mapping an origin AS number to a list of network providers.
As of today, there are 21 companies that participate and update global IRR records. All of which can help remove IPv4 addresses from Old route records.
Significance of Removing BGP and Old Route Records
Global Tier 1 Internet Service Providers (ISP’s) rely on BGP and IRR Records to verify proper owners of IPv4 addresses and maintain the integrity of internet routing. They will often ask anyone who attempts to announce and IPv4 address block to provide a letter of authorization before adding the subnet to global routing tables.
The ISPs rely on the Internet Routing Registry (IRR) records to further validate the route announcement. ARIN, RIPE, and APNIC provide secure methods of verifying owners’ permissions to route a specific IPv4 subnet via route objects and RPKI entries. There are also independent third parties such as RADB and other organizations who publish routes, which the upstream ISP’s also often use to further validate the route entries are legitimate, which helps prevent fraud and hijacking. For step-by-step instructions to clean objects, please visit our guide to remove old Internet Routing Registry Objects
In the example below, you will see multiple entries in BGP and third-party IRR’s such as Level 3, NTTCOM, RADB and RIPE-NONATUH. The owner of this xx.xx.xx.x/16 is currently announcing subnets in segments of a /18 and multiple /23’s and /24s via 3 different ASN’s which represent different Internet Service Providers. The owner of the IPv4 subnet would have to reach out to each of the aforementioned organizations and get the old records removed to eliminate any potential routing issues for a future owner.
If a new organization was to purchase the /16 IPv4 block or any portions of it, they would have issues announcing portions of the /16 or the entire subnet due to the current BGP announcements as well as the old IRR objects.
Our team at Brander Group ensures that all of the records are clean before transferring ownership of any IPv4 address block to a new owner. To get more information, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or contact us