Newsletters
News & Information for Technology Purchasers NewsFactor Sites:       NewsFactor.com     Enterprise Security Today     CRM Daily     Business Report     Sci-Tech Today  
   
Home Enterprise I.T. Cloud Computing Applications Hardware More Topics...
World Wide Web
Register for a certification exam.
Average Rating:
Rate this article:  
Tech Giants Invest in Fiber Optic To Control their Destiny
Tech Giants Invest in Fiber Optic To Control their Destiny

By Barry Levine
December 17, 2013 1:11PM

    Bookmark and Share
While costs, performance and control are certainly on the minds of tech companies, so is the NSA’s access, which damages their reputation and puts their data security in jeopardy. After all, if the NSA can do this, what about other nations or groups?
 



Even as President Obama meets on Tuesday with heads of major technology companies about governmental snooping, some of those companies are moving to get more control of their own data. A key component in this strategy: get more backbone.

The Internet's backbone, the major cables that carry its traffic, is a key vulnerability for these companies, since it is the largest component in their data flows that they do not control. Last month, The New York Times reported that the U.S. National Security Agency was capable of spying on Google and Yahoo users, among others, without having direct access to those companies' data centers.

Citing unnamed sources "knowledgeable about Google and Yahoo's infrastructure," the Times said that the NSA could tap into the fiber-optic backbones operated by such providers as Verizon, the BT Group and Level 3.

Over 100,000 Miles

A report in Monday's Wall Street Journal pointed to new investments by Google and Facebook in particular for underwater and underground cables, long-term agreements for leasing "dark" fiber -- dormant network carrying capacity -- and thus securing additional bandwidth, and developing their own network hardware components. Google now has control over more than 100,000 miles of cable, larger than Sprint's 40,000 miles of network in the U.S. In addition to laying cable to support its data centers, Google has also been installing ultrafast fiber optic networks to customers in a few areas, such as Kansas City.

In the summer, Facebook began transmitting data over its dark fiber in Europe, and Amazon, Microsoft, IBM and Salesforce have similarly been increasing their infrastructure. Among other investments, Facebook has backed the building of a 6,200-mile Internet cable across the Pacific Ocean to support users in Asia.

The alleged aims of this investment are to lower costs, guarantee capacity, and improve performance. Much of the investment is also partly being driven by cloud computing, as the giants position themselves to provide low-latency, high-capability platforms worldwide. Such infrastructure will undoubtedly accomplish some or all of those goals.

Meeting with Obama

But the companies are also aware of reports in the documents made public by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden, including one from January, that showed millions of records were sent every day to NSA headquarters in Maryland from Yahoo's and Google's networks. For the 30 days preceding the January document, that meant over 181 million records, plus metadata.

In response to that revelation, Google has expressed "outrage" and Yahoo has insisted it did not grant access.

While costs, performance and control are certainly on the minds of tech companies, so is the NSA's access, which damages their reputation and puts their data security in jeopardy. After all, if the NSA can do this, what about other nations or groups?

In a meeting Tuesday with President Obama, a group of 15 major technology companies called for measures to end such surveillance and urged him "to move aggressively on reform." The group included the chief executives of Google, Apple and Yahoo.

On Monday, a federal judge ruled that a NSA program to collect telephone metadata en masse probably violated the Fourth Amendment's guarantee against unreasonable search and seizure. The court granted legal standing to plaintiffs in a suit challenging the NSA program, so they could proceed in their legal effort.
 

Tell Us What You Think
Comment:

Name:



APC has an established a reputation for solid products that virtually pay for themselves upon installation. Who has time to spend worrying about system downtime? APC makes it easy for you to focus on business growth instead of business downtime with reliable data center systems and IT solutions. Learn more here.


 World Wide Web
1.   New Technology Defeats Privacy Efforts
2.   Verizon Launches Rewards Program
3.   Social Media Feeds Rare Syndrome
4.   NY Proposes Virtual Currency Rules
5.   Visa Intros Online Payment Service


advertisement
Radical.FM's Freemium Biz Model
Online radio startup asks for donations.
Average Rating:
Facebook Social Experiment Irks Us
Secretive test was legal, but ethical?
Average Rating:
New Technology Defeats Privacy Efforts
Study identifies 3 browser techniques.
Average Rating:
Product Information and Resources for Technology You Can Use To Boost Your Business

Network Security Spotlight
34 European Banks Hit by Android-Skirting Malware
Criminals have been finding gaping holes in Android-based two-factor authentication systems that banks around the world are using. The result: 34 banks in four European countries have been hit.
 
New Web Tracking Technologies Defeat Privacy Protections
Recently developed Web tracking tools are able to circumvent even the best privacy defenses, according to a new study by researchers at Princeton and the University of Leuven in Belgium.
 
Juniper DDoS Solution Aims at High-IQ Networks
In the face of more complex attacks, Juniper Networks is boosting its DDoS Secure solution to help companies mitigate the threats with more effective security intelligence throughout the network fabric.
 

Enterprise Hardware Spotlight
Contrary to Report, Lenovo's Staying in Small Windows Tablets
Device maker Lenovo has clarified a report that indicated it is getting out of the small Windows tablet business -- as in the ThinkPad 8 and the 8-inch Miix 2. But the firm said it is not exiting that market.
 
Seagate Unveils Networked Drives for Small Businesses
Seagate is out with five new networked attached storage products aimed at small businesses. The drives are for companies with up to 50 workers, and range in capacity from two to 20 terabytes.
 
Another Day, Another Internet of Things Consortium Is Born
In the emerging Internet of Things, zillions of devices will be talking to each other. Samsung, Intel and Dell just formed a consortium to ensure each thing can understand what others are saying.
 

Mobile Technology Spotlight
Apple Patent for Smart Watch Comes to Light
Does a new smart watch patent issued to Apple provide a preview of the expected wearable from the tech giant? Some Apple-watchers are parsing the patent for signs of the coming product.
 
Will iPhone 6 Cannibalize Apple's Tablet Sales?
Could Apple’s iPhone 6 -- it’s so-called super-size phone due to hit store shelves this fall -- come back to haunt the smartphone maker? Some observers say yes; others say preposterous.
 
Axed Nokia X Phones Suffered from Lack of Identity
So long, Nokia X, we hardly knew you. The Nokia X phones Microsoft discontinued blend two rival operating systems, but leave out the best of each. As a result, the devices didn't become a runaway hit.
 

Navigation
NewsFactor Network
Home/Top News | Enterprise I.T. | Cloud Computing | Applications | Hardware | Mobile Tech | Big Data | Communications
World Wide Web | Network Security | Data Storage | Small Business | Microsoft/Windows | Apple/Mac | Linux/Open Source | Personal Tech
Press Releases
NewsFactor Network Enterprise I.T. Sites
NewsFactor Technology News | Enterprise Security Today | CRM Daily

NewsFactor Business and Innovation Sites
Sci-Tech Today | NewsFactor Business Report

NewsFactor Services
FreeNewsFeed | Free Newsletters

About NewsFactor Network | How To Contact Us | Article Reprints | Careers @ NewsFactor | Services for PR Pros | Top Tech Wire | How To Advertise

Privacy Policy | Terms of Service
© Copyright 2000-2014 NewsFactor Network. All rights reserved. Article rating technology by Blogowogo. Member of Accuserve Ad Network.