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BGPocalypse: This could be why your Internet is so slow

BGPocalypse: This could be why your Internet is so slow
photo courtesy of SHUTTERSTOCK

Remember when everyone was terrified about the Y2K bug? We were terrified about the fact that many computers weren't built to move from the 1900s into the 2000s. Everything would default back to 0 and computers everywhere were expected to shut themselves off.

Well, the new arbitrary number that will break the Internet is 524,288 and we hit it on August 13th. Border Gateway Protocols are the "GPS" for the packets of information that are sent from a router to a website whenever you browse the Internet.

Many routers were built under the assumption that 524,288 spaces for routes and stops on the digital highway would be enough. Information overload isn't just a figure of speech anymore and could be the reason why your Internet is running slowly.

Thankfully, most ISPs and other service providers are aware of the problem. Modern routers have more space for BGP, and affected sites are planning to upgrade their server infrastructure as soon as possible.

What it does mean, though, is that you might be in for some rough Internet browsing over the next few months. If your router is more than five years old, you might want to consider looking into an upgrade. While you're at it, you might also want to make sure that your router isn't vulnerable to hacker attack by reading this simple method to secure your personal information.

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