Internet users across globe could experience network failures in next 48 hours
Internet users across the globe, including those in India, could experience some difficulty in connecting with the internet as the key domain servers are slated to undergo routine maintenance over the span of next 48 hours.
According to reports, internet users across the globe could experience network connection failures as the main domain servers and their associated infrastructure will be down for some time in the coming two days. In addition to this, global internet users could also experience difficulty in accessing web pages and making transactions.
The maintenance work is being carried out by the Internet Corporation of Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) and during the next 48 hours the organisation will change the cryptographic key that protects the Domain Name System (DNS), which is essentially the 'address book' of the internet.
For simplicity, consider this: DNS converts the human readable domain names, such as indiatoday.in, into a computer readable format or the IP address and vice-versa. During its maintenance work, ICANN will change the key to this address book, which in turn will help in countering the rising cases of cyber attacks on the internet.
The Communications Regulatory Authority (CRA) in a statement said that the global internet shutdown was necessary for ensuring a secure, stable and resilient DNS. "To further clarify, some internet users might be affected if their network operators or Internet Service Providers (ISPs) have not prepared for this change. However, this impact can be avoided by enabling the appropriate system security extensions," the organisation added in a statement.
Notably, DNS is a system that is serviced through hundreds of root servers that are across the globe. So theoretically, when one server is down, the other one should pick up the slack till the faulty server is back online. This means that, on paper, end users should encounter no major difficulties when using the internet.
However, the onus of maintaining a smoothly running internet also lies in the hands of the Internet Service Providers (ISPs) who can have an efficient system in place to juggle the traffic.
Meanwhile, a report by RT.com suggests that the organisation has carried out some preliminary tests that indicated that the key maintenance process would create minimum disturbance. However, users could face some inconvenience in accessing the internet, especially if they are using an outdated ISP.