NATO: 'internet doomsday plan' to reroute subsea internet traffic to satellites if attacked

NATO is building a system that will automatically to reroute subsea internet and data traffic to satellites if communications systems are attacked.

1 minute & 19 seconds read time

NATO is preparing most of its undersea internet cables in case of an attack. If communication systems are attacked through hostile actions like a terrorist attack, they'll automatically reroute subsea internet and data traffic to satellites.

NATO: 'internet doomsday plan' to reroute subsea internet traffic to satellites if attacked 410

Most regular people think internet communications are mostly done through satellite, but it's mostly transmitted through undersea cables, which has forced researchers from the US, Iceland, Sweden, and Switzerland are working with NATO to build a system that would automatically reroute internet data and traffic from subsea cables, to satellite communications if they were attacked.

The North Atlantic Treaty Organization's Science for Peace and Security Programme has approved a grant of up to $433,600 for the $2.5 million project, with research institutions providing in-kind contributions, reporting Bloomberg. Eyup Kuntay Turmus is an advisor and program manager at the NATO program, confirmed the project was recently approved, and told Bloomberg by email that the project will start "very soon".

The initiative itself hasn't been publicly announced, but there have been recent fears that Russia and China could mine, sever, or tamper the undersea cables in an attempt to disrupt communications during a military crisis. According to the treaty organization, the data transmitted through undersea cables accounts for roughly $10 trillion worth of financial transactions per day, and virtually all of NATO's internet traffic travels through them.

This won't be an overnight project, where before researchers create a working operational system, there will be two years spent test prototyping and navigating regulations, according to project leaders and documents seen by Bloomberg. The project is "expected to eventually involve commercial and government partners".

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