With its growth and increasing importance around the world, the Internet also faces a range technical and regulatory challenges. Where these are not met, the Internet’s benefits will be greatly limited.
- Security and stability: From Denial of Service (DoS) attacks to hacking, malware and data breaches, security remains the top priority of network engineers and managers. Governments are also increasingly concerned with security issues, especially those that affect confidence in the Internet.
- Available address resources: The Internet addressing capacity provided by what’s known as Internet Protocol version 4 (IPv4) is almost exhausted globally. Internet Protocol version 6 (IPv6) is the only viable option for the Internet’s future growth in the Asia Pacific but it is a significant operational challenge to effectively deploy.
- Efficiency and cost: One way to ensure efficiency and low cost is to localize traffic and content wherever possible. IXPs and data centres allow local traffic and content to stay local, lowering network costs, and increasing speed and efficiency.
- Regulation and governance: The Internet faces novel and unique regulatory challenges, often dominated by new and evolving technologies and services that operate across national borders. Resolving these challenges depends on our ability to nurture the multistakeholder processes of global Internet governance.
- Research: With the Internet’s rapid growth and evolving technologies has come increased complexity and greater technical challenges. Practical, operational research is needed to help us understand where the problems are now, where they will be in the future, and what we need to do to fix them.
If we can invest more in resolving these technical and regulatory challenges, they can be overcome. The Asia Pacific Internet community must find the resources to strengthen and develop new and specific skills and expertise. The success of the Internet will depend on our ability to do this.