Google Protects Underwater Cables Against Sharks

Google, like other major tech companies, has had its share of fight against the NSA’s spying efforts. To protect its user data, Google has said in days past that it would implement underwater construction of data cables to fight the government in these post-Snowden days in which we live.

Well, Google may have its share of success in fighting off the NSA, but the search engine giant now has one more enemy to fight: sharks.

The Mountain View, California company admitted as much earlier this month at a Boston Google Cloud Roadshow. Google cloud project manager Dan Belcher said that the company is doing all it can to protect its trans-Pacific underwater cables, going so far as to use Kevlar as a protective material in which to wrap the Internet cables. Google’s website says that this so-called Kevlar is nothing more than “polyethylene protective yarn,” and, while this may be true, Kevlar is a type of material with which many individuals are familiar – which may explain why Belcher made the statement he did.

Google started reporting issues with shark bites of underwater cables in the late 1980s, and to this day, still do not know the reasons behind cable shark bites. Some have said that the high-voltage electricity may be the reason behind shark bites, but many do not know. It could be the case that sharks presume that the long cables themselves are fish for the taking; or, sharks may choose to bite the cables because they presume the cables are food or are sheltering food. It may just be a simple case of curiosity that explains cable shark bites.

Recently, Google said that it intends to build Internet data cables that stretch to Japan in order to boost Internet speeds. The Internet cables will provide Internet speeds up to 60 terabits per second (60Tbps), whereas current Internet speeds are no higher than megabits per second (Mbps) or gigabits per second (Gbps).