Taiwan plans for Ukraine-style back-up satellite Internet network amid risk of war


When Russian forces knocked the Ukrainian metropolis of Irpin offline […]

When Russian forces knocked the Ukrainian metropolis of Irpin offline in March, Tesla chief Elon Musk’s Starlink satellite World wide web service came to the rescue.

In just two times, the town – whose ability lines and mobile and World wide web networks have been damaged or ruined – was back again on line, and residents could straight away get in touch with cherished types, in accordance to reviews.

Now, Taiwan – ever contending with the probability of a Chinese invasion – is getting a leaf out of that handbook by environment up a similar back-up satellite World wide web community.

“The experience of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine… confirmed that the full world can know what is happening there in real time,” stated Taiwan’s Electronic Minister Audrey Tang in latest media interviews, conveying programs to develop “electronic resilience for all” in Taiwan.

Over the future two several years, the island is set to trial a NT$550 million (S$24.67 million) satellite programme that aims to keep Taiwan’s command techniques operating if typical connections get slice, Ms Tang stated.

Quite a few Taiwan corporations are now in conversations with international satellite service vendors, she extra, without the need of delivering details.

New satellite Internet expert services this kind of as people made available by Starlink count on a constellation of low Earth orbit (LEO) satellites orbiting at an altitude of 550km that can beam the Online into even the most remote destinations from space.

Currently, worldwide Internet website traffic is primarily carried by way of fibre-optic cables lining the ocean flooring.

Taiwan is linked to the globe by way of 15 submarine knowledge cables.

“The Net made use of in Taiwan relies intensely on undersea cables, so if (attackers) slash off all the cables, they would reduce off all of the World wide web there,” Dr Lennon Chang, a cyber-safety researcher at Monash College, instructed The Straits Moments.

“It would make perception for the govt to have different varieties of communication ready for emergency cases,” he extra.

Taiwan’s satellite demo programme arrives amid soaring cross-strait tensions, which reached new heights in new weeks in the wake of US Home Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s stop by to the island in August. China, which views self-governing Taiwan as its have territory, considered her journey an infringement of its have sovereignty and territorial integrity.

Beijing has under no circumstances renounced the use of pressure to bring Taiwan less than its management, and responded to the stop by by launching a series of unprecedented army workout routines, such as the firing of ballistic missiles in excess of the island.

Presently, some analysts say that issues around Taiwan’s network vulnerabilities are very serious.

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