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The Blair Switch Project (Halloween Special)

By Alex Henthorn-Iwane
| | 3 min read


On April 9th, 2018 three (billion) traffic flows, Heather, Mike and Josh, set out to supply the German Internet with content. They traveled to the Interxion FRA5 data center to a rendezvous with the DE-CIX switch, aka “The Blair Switch.” They were never seen again. What happened was only a mystery for a short period of time once DE-CIX tweeted about the tragedy. Yet, such legends easily fade in folks’ memories because Internet traffic disappearances are common occurrences. Six months later, on Halloween week, it’s appropriate to raise these ghostly flows and trace their footsteps to their fatal encounter. You can do that by reliving the spooky story in our earlier blog post.

Halloween graphic

Yet, the metaphysical narrative of this network massacre is that business relies on the Internet, but the Internet remains scarily unpredictable. A power outage that takes out one switch can take down a portion of the Internet for a top world economy. If your business relies on SaaS and cloud for productivity or Internet access to serve digital customers, knowing that there are such be-(s)witching problems is grounds for thoughtful consideration of how to minimize those risks. Unfortunately, in the Internet and the cloud, there’s no guaranteed way and no steady state. For example, just look at what happened to companies that thought a Direct Connect was a magic bullet, but then found that these connections were the last to come back up when AWS had a major power outage. The fact is that the cloud and the Internet are fundamentally out of your control. But what makes that loss of control much more frightening is that your teams are largely blind, because traditional visibility techniques can’t see out there into the dark beyond your four walls.

The Blair Switch Project graphic

This Halloween, it’s time to do away with spine-chilling blindness, and gain visibility across every external network and provider you depend on. There’s no need for you to stumble into blood-curdling business continuity risk. Download the Guide to Network Intelligence and learn how you can see, understand and optimize all your connected experiences.

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