28 October 2013, 12:02

BRICS countries are building a "new Internet" hidden from NSA

BRICS countries are building a "new Internet" hidden from NSA

The NSA spying scandal created a need for a cyberspace hidden from the prying eyes of American spooks. While countries like Germany are trying to create a secure cyberspace built on current infrastructure, a consortium of BRICS companies are working to create a "new Internet". The Hindu, reports that Brazil is building a "BRICS cable" that will create an independent link between Brazil, South Africa, India, China and Russia.

The length of the fiber-optic cable will be over 21 thousand miles, making it one of the most ambitious underwater telecom projects ever attempted. The cable will run from the Brazilian town of Fortaleza to the Russian town of Vladivostok via Cape Town, Chennai and Shantou.

The main goal of the project is to create a network inaccessible to the NSA, bypassing all parts of internet infrastructure located outside BRICS countries. While this ambitious project certainly has potential, it also has some inherent weaknesses. So far, it is not clear whether the project company has enough funds to finish it, although the Brazilian president has voiced her support for the cable's construction. It remains to be seen whether this political support will generate financial support from Brazil or from other countries. Another weakness is that the cable will only protect the data sent through it and won't help the people who use US-based web services like Google, Facebook or Yahoo because American IT companies have been willingly helping the NSA spy on their users. The last significant weakness is that the cable will still be vulnerable to eavesdropping by specialized American military units which learned how to intercept communications on underwater cables during the Cold War. It is possible that constant checking and patrolling of the cable will be required in order to protect it from US intelligence agencies or from the American military. All these weaknesses can be overcome through cooperation of BRICS political leaders, IT companies and maybe militaries. In today's world, privacy is an expensive privilege but BRICS countries are one of the few ones able to pay for it.

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