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The Scion Internet Architecture

The SCION Internet Architecture, illustration

Credit: Yurii Andreichyn

The internet has been successful beyond even the most optimistic expectations. It permeates almost every aspect of our society and economy worldwide. This success has created universal dependence on communication, as many of the processes underpinning modern society would grind to a halt if it were unavailable. However, the state of the safety and availability of the Internet is far from commensurate with its importance.

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Although we cannot conclusively determine what the impact of even a one-minute outage of Internet connectivity would be, anecdotal evidence suggests that even a brief outage would have a profound negative effect on governmental, economic, and societal operations.11 Making matters worse, the Internet is not designed primarily for high availability in the face of malicious actions by adversaries. Recent patches to improve Internet security and availability are indeed constrained by the design of the current Internet architecture. A new Internet architecture must offer availability, security by design, and incentives for deployment, as well as address economic, political, and legal issues at the design stage.


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