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Re: Vulnerbilities of Interconnection

  • From: Christopher L. Morrow
  • Date: Fri Sep 06 11:58:17 2002


Wow, nothing like jumping into the middle of a running discussion after
deleting all previous messages unread :)

On Fri, 6 Sep 2002, Pawlukiewicz Jane wrote:

>
> Hi Alex,
>
> alex@yuriev.com wrote:
> >
> > > >
> > > > Lets bring this discussion to a some common ground -
> > > >
> > > > What kind of implact on the global internet would we see should we observe
> > > > nearly simultaneous detonation of 500 kilogramms of high explosives at N of the
> > > > major known interconnect facilities?
> > >
> > > N? Well, if you define N as the number of interconnect facilities, such
> > > as all the Equinix sites
> >
> > Lets say that N is 4 and they are all in the US, for the sake of the
> > discussion.
>
> Which four? Makes a big difference. And there, we just got
> proprietary/classified. I've often wondered what difference there would
> be in attacking cable heads instead of colo sites. Cut off the country
> from everywhere. How bad would that be.
>

I was under the impression that OCS/Homeland Security had already done a
little study, perhaps aided by some other 3 letter agencies and some
Telco's, for this very thing. I was also under the impression that the
number of sites had to be sigificantly higher than 4 to do any real
damage.

> >
> > > (and I'm not banging on Equinix, it's just
> > > where we started all this) then I think globally, it wouldn't make that
> > > much difference. People in Tokyo would still be able to reach the globe
> > > and both coasts of the US.
> >
> > This presumes that the networks peer with the same AS numbers everywhere in
> > the world, which I dont think they do.
>
> Hadn't thought of that. I'm not sure then of the impact.

Additionally, a majority of peering, big peering, isn't on public
exchanges is it? So, you'd have to find all the places that the larger
providers connect to eachother and perhaps target these. Even with this
there are the public exchanges so things 'should' fail over to them...

Overall I recall the outcome from the study being that the internet was a
significantly difficult target to completely kill, and even making a
performance impact was somewhat difficult... I will say though, that my
memory is a bit foggy on this particular study, I didn't participate in
it, and I didn't read the actual results. Any info I have on it is third
hand via a lawyer, so take all this with a grain of salt :)

> >
> > The other thing to think about is that the physical transport will be
> > affected as well. Wavelenth customers will lose their paths. Circuit
> > customers that rely on some equipment located at the affected sites, losing
> > their circuits.
> >
>
> For individual users, it might be devastating. Overall, globally, that's
> a different story.

This was about the result I heard, you can easily cut out 'mom and pop'
ISP, but cutting out a large provider is a tougher task with bombs... we
already know its possible with the right routing 'update' :(





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