U.S. Congress Finally Gets Some Good Ideas About IoT Security

Proposed legislation lays out sensible security guidelines, though there’s room for

3 min read
illustration of looking down at seated congress members
Illustration: Jude Buffum

illustration of looking down at seated congress membersIllustration: Jude Buffum

In 2016, attacks such as the Mirai botnet took down several popular websites, and in doing so, brought attention to the need for security for Internet of Things (IoT) devices. Since then, the U.S. Congress has made attempts to pass legislation around IoT security, including a lame attempt in 2017, when senators introduced a bill that would prevent the government from buying connected devices that had one of a small number of glaring security flaws. Once again, Congress is trying to pass legislation, but this time around, there’s more to like in the bill.

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Why the Internet Needs the InterPlanetary File System

Peer-to-peer file sharing would make the Internet far more efficient

12 min read
An illustration of a series
Carl De Torres

When the COVID-19 pandemic erupted in early 2020, the world made an unprecedented shift to remote work. As a precaution, some Internet providers scaled back service levels temporarily, although that probably wasn’t necessary for countries in Asia, Europe, and North America, which were generally able to cope with the surge in demand caused by people teleworking (and binge-watching Netflix). That’s because most of their networks were overprovisioned, with more capacity than they usually need. But in countries without the same level of investment in network infrastructure, the picture was less rosy: Internet service providers (ISPs) in South Africa and Venezuela, for instance, reported significant strain.

But is overprovisioning the only way to ensure resilience? We don’t think so. To understand the alternative approach we’re championing, though, you first need to recall how the Internet works.

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