Sunday, November 18, 2012

The World Wide Web and the Growing Menace of Cyber-security

The World Wide Web and the Growing Menace of Cyber-security

Today, virtually everyone surfs the World Wide Web. Every moment individuals log onto their personal or business computers and connect to a vast interactive virtual network. Individuals and organizations usually pay a monthly connection fee to ISPs (Internet Services Providers) to access this vast “network of inter-connected servers”.

If you research and try to understand the dynamics of WWW you will in all likelihood drive yourself crazy. Most online information explaining the WWW will tell you that it is a “network of inter-connected servers”. It dismisses fully the concept of a “central hub” that controls the entire system. Many have nick-named this so-called central hub “Fu Manchu or the Matrix”. The adage that “the greatest trick the Devil ever pulled was convincing the world he didn't exist" parallels the mystery and dangers of the WWW.

To try and understand the WWW you must ask a few questions:

a) How do individual ISP’s connect to one another? ISPs use different technology to transit information over the internet (fiber optic cable, satellite systems etc.).
b) How do independent servers connect to ISPs? Is that connection voluntary or involuntary?
c) How do ISPs and servers around the world connect to one another? Technology and politics differ from nation to nation (ex. China can block sites it deems politically inappropriate). Why do we have consensus in the virtual world but not in the tangible world?
d) Does information stored on a particular server become a permanent record on the WWW or is it lost when a server shuts down?
e) Why are sensitive or high security networks, which can become victims of cyber terrorism, connected to the ubiquitous version of the WWW? Can smaller high-security networks outside the larger WWW network be constructed?
f) How many central ISPs (ex. ATT, Bell) connect to the WWW? More importantly, what are they connecting to?

Please read the commentary I wrote October 30, 2010 via the following LINK. It is one of the most important things you will ever read:

We can attempt to explain the functionality of the WWW with the following example. You plug-in an appliance into a power outlet to make it functional (consider that appliance to be a server). Thousands of other homeowners residing in your city are doing exactly the same thing as you. We are all drawing energy from a central utility (consider this to be an ISP). That utility generates power from a central energy source (the non-existent hub).

The only parallel is that the energy source (ex. nuclear reactor) is connected to a larger power grid (inter-connected servers). This allows nuclear reactors, coal furnaces etc. to supply and share energy along the grid. The dilemma is that unlike the WWW the power grid has geographic limitations. A nuclear reactor in Toronto cannot connect to a nuclear reactor in China. In the absence of a central hub, does the same parallel not hold true for ISPs?

The protectionist and defensive nature of security has mutated into an oppressive technological control system. We will take infinite steps to protect technology but not to protect human life. Our total reliance on energy and technology has created this conundrum. But what would happen if energy was free and abundant? This possibility exists but it has become a victim of political terrorism.

Thank you,
Joseph Pede

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