Rethinking the power of packet switching in the coming cyber threats era

Manfred Sneps-Sneppe, Dmitry Namiot


The article is devoted to the discussion of the telecommunications development strategy. Communication specialists all around the world are facing the same problem: shifting from circuit switching (CS) to packet switching (CS). We will provide examples to illustrate the difficulties that complicate the transition from CS to PS and the move to hybrid CS+PS solutions. We start with the basics of routers and switches. Then we discuss the Defense Information System Network move from circuits to packets, namely, “Joint Vision 2010” - the implementation of signaling protocol SS7 and Advanced Intelligent Network, and “Joint Vision 2020” - the transformation from SS7 to IP protocol. We describe some packet switching shortcomings in the implementation of Joint Vision 2020, namely, Joint Information Environment as a beautiful but unattainable dream, GSM-O contract, and Joint regional security stacks failures, as well as give some critics regard Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure Cloud Strategy and Artificial Intelligence Initiative. An example of a hybrid solution: a unified packet and circuit switched network are shown. We describe a new trend in microelectronics, namely, a network-on-a-chip orientation from packet to circuit switching. We conclude that the long channel-packet coexistence seems inevitable, especially in the face of growing cyber threats.

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