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Block a country with my Cisco Router or Firewall

Problem:

We are often asked by customers about how they can prevent traffic from a certain country (let’s say country X) from entering their network. The motivations for doing this could vary. Sometimes a company does not do business with all countries in the world; therefore, the company doesn’t need to be accessible from all countries. Other times it is an issue of trust and security, where an administrator may not want to allow country X to enter their infrastructure. Finally, there are cases where country X has often been incriminated with malicious activity, so an administrator may want to block country X when there is no need for the organization to interact with this country. In this document I present a methodology on how to write a tool that provides the configuration lines to block country X, using your IOS router or ASA/ASASM firewall.
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Global Internet Expansion: Who Will Lead the Way? [INFOGRAPHIC]

According to recent Cisco research, global Internet traffic will grow nearly four-fold from 2010 -- 2015.  However, that increase in traffic won’t be dominated by one region. How much will each region contribute to the worldwide traffic expansion?

Just by sheer population size alone, one could assume that the Asia-Pacific region would lead in Internet traffic growth. However, that assumption would only be partially accurate. Asia-Pacific is forecast to lead in file-sharing traffic and Internet Gaming traffic. In terms of Internet TV, business IP traffic and VoIP bandwidth, other regions will be in the top spot.

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IP Traffic to Quadruple by 2015

Cisco VNI InfographicOne of the busiest times of the year for my team comes every June when we release the Cisco Visual Networking Index which forecasts IP Traffic growth around the globe.  Now in its 5th year, the forecast, which initially started as a internal project to guide our own engineers as they innovate the next generation of networking infrastructure, has now grown to be an innovation in its own right, helping to provide data for our service provider customer and regulatory bodies alike (not to mention press, analysts, and IP groupies like yours truly.)

The top level finding of this Cisco VNI Forecast, which spans from 2010 to 2015 is that total worldwide IP traffic will increase 4x by 2015, reaching 966 exabytes or just under 1 Zettabye (which is 10 to the 21st power)  To put context to rising demand of IP over the last several years, we have had to change the unit of measurement several times just to keep up with the growth…. First it we measured traffic in terms of Petabytes… then moved to Exabytes… and now are embarking on Zettabytes…(looking ahead, we’ll eventually start to use the term Yottabyte…)

Factors that are driving this growth, include:

  • Video, as it is increasingly a part of nearly every networked experience.  By 2015, one million minutes of video – nearly two years worth – will cross the network every second.
  • More devices are connecting to the network – we forecast more than 15 billion will be on the network by 2015, making it on average more than two devices (whether it be a PC, phone, TV, or even machine-to-machine) per person for every person on earth (and if you’re like me, you’re an “overachiever” on this number, with well over a dozen devices connected to the network…by the way, just how many network connections are you responsible for?) Read More »

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On the Threshold of the Zettabyte Era

Just how rapidly is Internet usage growing?  Consider this:

  • Total global Internet traffic will quadruple by 2015, reaching 966 exabytes per year, nearly a zettabyte.
  • By 2015, the traffic equivalent of all the movies ever made will cross the Internet every 5 minutes.
  • In 2015, one million minutes of video content will cross the global network every second.

These “wow!”-inspiring data bits come to you courtesy of the just-released “Cisco Visual Networking Index Forecast, 2010-2015.”

We are indeed on the threshold of the “Zettabyte Era.”  And the implications are significant: Read More »

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Looking Ahead: Part 4 – Announcing the 2010 Cisco VNI Usage Study

On Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, we covered the findings of the 2010 Cisco VNI Usage Study - but today is a little different.  Come on, I know you.  We’ve been together in this corner of the blogosphere for awhile now…and I know you’re already looking ahead to the weekend (as am I, my Zettabyte-loving buddies). So in that anticipatory spirit, I think it is fitting that this final post on this study be forward-looking as well.

True, I did say in the first post, that Cisco VNI Usage is focused on the current trends while the Cisco VNI Forecast is focused on the future traffic growth over the next half decade -- but these distinct research platforms are really more complementary than siloed.  That’s because we actually use the VNI Usage findings to help shape and refine the input assumptions for our VNI Forecast model.  Combined with ever-changing third-party subscription growth forecasts, VNI Usage guidance and validation helps us maintain the high level of credibility that our Forecast receives (per frequent and in-depth scrutiny from regulators and our customers).

Here are our main takeaways from the Cisco VNI team as we start to do advance work on the next revision of our Forecast:

When the two Cisco VNI research platforms are compared, there are several striking similarities:

  VNI Forecast VNI Usage
GB of Internet Traffic per Month per Connection in 2009 (Q3) 11.8 11.4*
GB of Internet Traffic per Month per Connection in 2010 (Q3) 15.6 14.9*
Growth in Internet Traffic per Month per Connection from 2009-2010 31.5% 30.7%*

The comparatively slight differences between VNI Usage results and VNI Forecast projections can be attributed to the source of the contributed  VNI Usage data (a random sampling of more than 20 global service providers), while the VNI Forecast effort is designed to be a comprehensive, worldwide model.  If we were to do a weighted average of providers based on the total number of broadband lines in their region, the VNI Usage numbers would likely be much higher as developed countries tend to consume more bandwidth than those countries with less developed infrastructure -- but regardless, we were quite pleased to see the independent efforts come out so closely.

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