New global internet reliability concerns emerge

Undersea, internet-carrying cables are not protected well enough and there isn’t an alternative in place should they fail.

That’s according to a new report from U.K.-based Policy Exchange, which outlines potential catastrophic effects that a simple cut in the hosepipe-sized underwater infrastructure could create.

Tsunamis, a vessel dragging an anchor, or even saw-wielding Russians could bring down the global financial system or cripple a solo nation’s internet access, Policy Exchange says in its new study (pdf).

Anchor dragging apparently is not unusual and has happened a few times over the years — most recently, an incident in Somalia earlier this year caused a three-week internet outage in the country.

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