Though IPv6 is not here yet it one day we will all lose our familiar IPv4 addresses and be communicating over the internet solely with IPv6 addresses.
What interests me is the implications this has for those who scan the internet hunting for common vulnerabilities. At the moment a common method for internet worms is to scan the subnet upon which they lie (they infect a machine on
188.8.131.52so they scan all IPs at
80.7.*.*, maybe expanding out to
80.*.*.*). Whilst it's still non-trivial to 'scan the entire internet', scanning 1/255th is completely feasible.
What I would like to know is will this still make sense when we are all running on IPv6 addresses? We will be moving from
4,294,967,296 addresses to
340,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 addresses. Will it be anywhere near as simple for these worms to scan their 'neighbourhood'? Or will network nodes be so sparsely distributed that an IPv6 address becomes a commodity in itself?