Computer scientists at the University of Wisconsin and the University of Oregon have determined that the United States’ Internet infrastructure is at serious risk of being flooded owing to the rising sea levels. According to Paul Barford (UW) and Ramakrishnan Durairajan (UO), this is because much of the land-based underground fiber optic cabling through which the Internet is carried is in shallow underground trenches along the coasts.
The United States is worrying about something that they consider a new Russian threat: increased Russan submarine activity around the undersea fiber optic cables that carry Internet communications, and the potential that those submarine cables could be severed, crippling U.S. Internet operations. Whether you see this as promoting Russia as a bogeyman, or a real possibility, the reality is that history has demonstrated that undersea Internet cables can be cut, and that it wreaks havoc.
If you are having trouble with Internet connections between Saudi Arabia, Djibouti, Egypt, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), India, Lebanon, Malaysia, the Maldives, Pakistan, Qatar, Syria, Taiwan, Yemen, or Zambia, you’re not alone. Three undersea cables were cut this morning, leading to a global disruption of Internet connectivity. And this is the second time this year this has happened.