Can The World Wide Web Be Destroyed?

Have you ever thought that one day you woke up and check your phone for email or check your status on WhatsApp and all look dead!!

Though there is a very less chance of this type of incident occurring it remains a very interesting question whether can the World Wide Web be destroyed in the future.

There is a possibility of this calamity as we have witnessed global interruptions, and crashes hundreds of times in the past.

Let’s begin this speculative yet interesting debate that how this unforeseen can ever happen in the future. What factors may eventually become the reason for this event? As we all know that internet isn’t a single network, it’s widely assumed that it can’t crash as a network. It’s a gigantic network of networks that’s all connected to one other. It’s the most complex and powerful communication system ever devised by humanity. As different computers and other machines log in and out, the internet alters minute by minute – even second by second.

World Wide Web

Solar Flare/Storm May Greatly Affect the World Wide Web

The threat of a big solar flare, arguably the most spectacular of all the conceivable internet doomsday scenarios, has kept experts awake at night for decades. Concerns about solar flares precede the internet. A big solar flare can unleash an electromagnetic pulse (EMP) that could fry all electronics on the earth, according to science.

A solar storm could disrupt the internet, transit and telecommunications systems, base stations, and power grids, bringing civilization to a halt. The Sun’s swirling convection currents in the upper atmosphere discharge billions of tons of magnetized plasma into space on rare occasions.

A strong geomagnetic storm, according to reports, can affect the internet, telephones, and other electrical equipment. Weather events occur when the sun ejects a huge bubble of superheated fuel known as plasma.

A coronal mass ejection is a bubble that contains a cloud of electrically conducting protons and electrons. The magnetic discipline twists and weakens whenever these molecules collide with the magnetic restraint that surrounds the planet.

Sabotage (Catastrophic event)

It is interesting to know that there is nothing you can do to physically destruct the internet. The world wide web is not a mere physical object that is prone to any physical destruction. It is an extensively vast network of networks that is impossible to break down.

The good news is that any worldwide catastrophe large enough to wipe out all of the world’s NSPs would almost certainly wipe out all life on the planet as well. These would be extinction-level catastrophes, such as an asteroid collision or a worldwide nuclear war, according to Levinson. If we do confront such a situation, internet access will be the last thing on our minds.

Smaller disasters, on the other hand, could knock off parts of the internet for a short time. They have already done so. The network of undersea fiber-optic cables that connect the continents is the most vulnerable part of the internet backbone. Rock slides, submarine earthquakes, and other natural events periodically cut and rupture these cables, which number over 400 worldwide.

The vast majority of these cables are unprotected, unarmored, tiny, and fragile — roughly the size of a garden hose. Isolated faults, such as those produced by natural events or an errant anchor, are usually rarely a concern because traffic is quickly diverted to other cables. Accidents do, however, occur. In 2011, a 75-year-old woman digging for shoreline copper damaged a cable, causing internet connectivity in Armenia to be unavailable for five hours.

World Wide Web

A Simple Glitch In The World Wide Web May Cause The Final Blow

The internet is not only vulnerable to nefarious human activity. (Although they are the most terrifying; more on that later.) In 2015, a committee of the nonprofit organization ICANN released an alarming warning on a potential flaw buried deep within the internet’s basic structure.

A weakness in the internet’s address book system, according to the committee study, could potentially multiply the impact of any physical damage to root servers or undersea cables. Ironically, the problem is rooted in the internet’s primary strength: redundancy. If a large chunk of the internet goes down for several days, the “backup system” of redundant paths may get completely confused, mixing up new data with out-of-date data. The specifics become quite complicated.

You can read the original report here.
https://www.icann.org/en/system/files/files/rssac-003-root-zone-ttls-21aug15-en.pdf

And if all these root servers get intentionally disabled, things will get a lot worse than expected.

Systems Theory May Have Our Answer

According to the systems theory, every system can never be perfect. The same goes for the internet (world wide web) as well, which is an extensive network of many networks linked together. And it is impossible to look out and think about all the possible outcomes. The reason for it certainly is a surprise for us we may have not seen it coming.

We sim If the day comes when the internet goes down for good, the item that brings it down will very certainly be something we didn’t see coming.

Final Thoughts

Though whatever we think and precautions we take for the security of the internet and networks, there is a possibility that it can be destroyed by something that we have never thought about or anticipated. But there is always a possibility to expect the unthinkable, a catastrophe or series of events may lead to unprecedented damage to the world wide web or internet, but we may still have some connectivity with severe congestion. We will get serious disruptions or connectivity issues due to high volume but may still get little or slow connectivity of the internet.

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