Internet exchange calls for “stronger backing” for Scottish facility

Written by Nicholas Mairs on 31 August 2016 in News

Much of Scotland's internet traffic diverted via London despite the establishment of an Edinburgh exchange

Computer - Dominic Lipinski/PA 

One of the world’s largest Internet exchange points has urged Internet Service Providers (ISPs) and local businesses to join their Scottish exchange, in order to reduce traffic through London.

A recently released report by Audit Scotland and the Scottish Government lays out plans to create a world-class digital Scotland by 2020 through a ‘6 pillar’ infrastructure plan, with an Internet exchange being one of these key factors.

The London Internet Exchange (LINX) however say the report neglected to acknowledge that they had launched such an exchange in Edinburgh in 2013.


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The group say use of their IXScotland facility would result in lower latency and faster connectivity for Scottish networks and Internet users, and would be a “huge step” towards achieving the report’s objectives.

LINX, which connects over 700 networks from over 65 countries, say the majority of local Internet traffic in Scotland currently travels via Internet exchanges in England, before reaching its end user.

Internet exchanges, such as LINX, are mutual membership organisations which allow Internet service providers to exchange traffic between their networks, leading to advantages related to cost, latency and bandwidth.

John Souter, CEO at LINX says: “We worked very closely with the Scottish Government when launching IXScotland but unfortunately growth at the exchange has not been as rapid as we would’ve liked.

“We know that the LINX membership is keen to be even more involved with developments in the country and that includes raising awareness of the benefits of joining a local exchange.

“IXScotland has so much potential – with a more concentrated effort from all parties it could become an effective interconnection hub for the country and something the whole tech community can benefit from.”

James King of Scottish Futures Trust says: “We have taken the lead to develop an approach to implement the Scottish Government’s World-Class digital vision.

“Our focus, working together with industry and the Scottish Government, is to ensure the right mechanisms, partnerships and commercial approaches are developed to deliver a programme to improve digital infrastructure investment and its delivery across Scotland’s diverse landscape.

“Anything that can be done to move the agenda along is a positive step for us.”

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