The trend towards delivering traffic that is neither shaped nor prioritised by the internet service provider (ISP) – net neutrality – is a leading topic of conversation, both locally and abroad. Organisations need to pay attention and understand exactly how net neutrality works and the impact it can potentially have on their business and bottom line. Network Platforms, a service-driven ICT solutions provider, already leads the way in assuring its clients of complete net neutrality, traffic management and control, effectively ending the debate for its clients.
“Net neutrality at its most basic, simply states that all traffic types need to be treated as equal without shaping, limitation or control by the internet service provider,” says Gavin Epstein, Sales Executive at Network Platforms.
There is a standard level of traffic shaping for ISPs across the globe and for many the question is – should ISPs be allowed to charge more for speedier data delivery? While there is no simple answer, clients of Network Platforms don’t need to find one.
“We offer all traffic at the same capacity, no matter what service a client takes from us,” says Epstein. “We don’t prioritise or shape traffic and ensure our clients get full capacity and complete net neutrality. Network Platforms looks after the integrity of our network while allowing our clients to purchase infrastructure and have complete control over how they manage and deliver that infrastructure.”
UNDERSTANDING THE RISKS
The solutions on offer by Network Platforms may check all the boxes when it comes to delivering on the net neutrality promise, but there are some challenges that the organisation needs to be aware of, and prepared for before moving forward.
“Clients need to be in a situation technically to manage their bandwidth utilisation properly,” advises Epstein. “If we were an ISP that shaped traffic, we would protect their usage to a degree; however, we treat all traffic the same way. The onus is on the organisation to put in a device that will allow for deeper control over traffic allocation and bandwidth management.”
As an example, if an ISP is shaping Torrent traffic this would protect the bandwidth allocation to a degree by not allowing the Torrent to consume all the allocated bandwidth. Clients require a feature-rich firewall that can manage bandwidth allocation and QoS (Quality of Service) to ensure applications have the required bandwidth. Network Platforms offers a managed firewall solution should the client not want to manage this internally, and bandwidth capacity monitoring so that in the event that a client utilises the full allocated bandwidth for a certain period, the client and the Network Platforms NOC are automatically notified. Should Network Platforms manage the client’s firewall we can then identify which user or application is consuming the bandwidth.
Net neutrality with Network Platforms provides enterprises with the freedom to monitor and administer traffic in accordance with their own requirements. It empowers clients, granting them full capacity with no application structuring and an experience that can be tailored to suit their unique business needs.
“We have never shaped traffic and we never will,” concludes Epstein. “We are fully cognisant of the trend towards net neutrality internationally and have paid attention to the value it adds to our clients. While others debate, we are already there and many of our clients are taking full advantage of what it can do.”