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Issue paper: Can the Internet be broken?

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11/27/2017

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After exploring in previous publications the security issues related to the DNS protocol and the risks of hijacking domain names, Afnic has addressed a thorny question: is it possible to break the Internet? Can its operation be interrupted for a longer or shorter period, following a deliberate attack, or an accidental breakdown?

This issue paper attempts to answer the vast question, in particular by redefining what the Internet is, what are its most crucial elements, those potentially subject to attacks via the routers and the DNS protocol. It also reviews recent examples of spectacular incidents and their consequences.

Lastly, rather than categorically answering a purely theoretical question, this issue paper proposes pointers for consideration and action to improve the resistance (to cope with an attack) and the resilience (to restart after an attack) of the Internet.

Afnic Issue Paper cover Can the Internet be brokenDownload Afnic Issue Paper “Can the Internet be broken?”