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Sending Out Internet Warnings For Outages, Viruses

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An early warning system on the Internet could help Europe avoid deliberate or accidental outages, restrict the spread of new viruses, and ensure reliable services, say Malte Hesse and Norbert Pohlmann from the Institute for Internet Security at the University of Applied Sciences in Gelsenkirchen, Germany. The researchers say there is a growing need to improve the reliability and trustworthiness of the Internet, and that raising awareness of critical processes and components on the Internet is essential, particularly among those responsible for the Internet's continued operation.

The Internet's greatest asset is its decentralized structure, but that asset also creates a problem in that it consists of almost 30,000 autonomous systems, each managed by individual organizations primarily within the private sector, and there is no governing body for the network. Unfortunately, the private organizations are exposed to a high level of competition, which eliminates the possibility of sharing important management information. If an early warning system is to be built and implemented, a change in attitude is needed. "The cooperation of companies, organizations, and governments is important to create a global view of the Internet," the researchers say.

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