IEIC Special Coverage | Staffan Göjeryd

Telia Carrier, Chief Executive Officer

Telia Carrier operates the world’s most connected Internet backbone, AS 1299, according to DYN/Oracle ranking. As the pandemic spread over the world and restrictions and lockdowns were introduced, we saw tremendous shifts in traffic flows and volumes. In many cases representing a full year’s growth in just a few weeks. The shifts and growth followed the pattern of the pandemic spreading; starting out in Asia, then moving to Europe and onwards to North America and Latin America as the virus spread.

While our increasingly connected physical world has undoubtedly accelerated the spread of Covid-19, connectivity, in a virtual context, is helping to slow it down. By providing the critical foundations of the Internet and enabling the core services that facilitate ubiquitous conferencing, remote working and E-learning, backbone networks like ours enable many people to continue with their jobs and communicate with friends and family, at a safe social distance.

Apart from managing a dramatic surge in traffic volumes on our own and customer networks, an instrumental component of Internet functionality is the inter-network connectivity and augmentation of capacity throughout the entire ecosystem. Whilst we have been focusing on rapidly turning-up capacity within our own backbone, it is equally important to secure additional capacity between the different networks that make up the core of the Internet.

The Internet is based on collaboration and this challenge is no exception. It is heartening to see that yet again, the network community has come together and is putting operational priorities before vested commercial interests. The basic foundations and resilience of the Internet stand strong through these trying times.