In February of last year, Anonymous threatened to take down the Internet in “Operation Global Blackout.” Needless to say, it was an empty threat, but something similar could one day happen. We could all lose access to the Internet. If that were to happen, would we have a Plan B?
In a TED talk released today, Danny Hillis speaks on the importance of having a Plan B for when and if the Internet is even taken offline:
In the 1970s and 1980s, a generous spirit suffused the internet, whose users were few and far between. But today, the net is ubiquitous, connecting billions of people, machines and essential pieces of infrastructure — leaving us vulnerable to cyber-attack or meltdown. Internet pioneer Danny Hillis argues that the Internet wasn’t designed for this kind of scale, and sounds a clarion call for us to develop a Plan B: a parallel system to fall back on should — or when — the Internet crashes.
Hillis’ Plan B may be closer than we think as we reported in early 2012 on the efforts of a group of hackers and engineers to build a censorship-free Internet that would coexist with our current network. It wouldn’t exactly be a network that billions of people could fall back on if the Internet were to ever go down, but it proves that a Plan B is certainly possible.