Submarine Cable Monitoring System

The proliferation of Internet during the last decade has led to rapid increase in data traffic in all countries. This is more visible in the developing countries of Africa, Asia and South America where Internet usage has increased more due to the boom in mobile communications. The data traffic on Internet requires wideband links from such countries to the developed world which are now being carried on long distance submarine optical fiber cable links.

The availability of submarine cable has also increased and technology developments in the optical domain has made possible for providing links from 2.5 Gbps to 100 Gbps on a single wavelength. Increasing use of Dense Wavelength Division Multiplexing (DWDM) with each fibre capable of carrying upto 48 wavelengths with 100 GHz separation or 96 wavelengths with just 50 GHz separation has provided immense trunk capacity for carrying Internet traffic across continents.

Most countries have just one or two submarine cable landing stations within their territory where the local ISPs bring their international traffic for destinations abroad. This point provides the national security and defense agencies a single point for monitoring of international traffic. Shoghi has designed its Submarine Cable Monitoring System to be able to cater for such technological advancements and can provide the both the hardware and the software for bulk monitoring of data traffic.

The solution is implemented using different modules which are provided based on the nature of the optical cable system in use at the landing station. An optical switch is provided which is used to split the optical signal being transmitted in a very low proportion for monitoring. A Wavelength Separator Module is provided if there is any DWDM used on the fiber being monitored which can split the individual wavelengths and provide the required wavelengths on different ports for further processing. The optical signal is then given to a protocol detector module which can detect the lower layer protocols running on the fiber including OTU-n, SDH/SONET hierarchy, Ethernet over SDH etc. and the Virtual Containers, IP and transport layers containing data traffic. The respective protocols and the speeds of operation from 2.5 GBPS till 100 GBPS can be thus clearly identified and interpreted for further analysis. The output can be taken for the required traffic from specific ports. The traffic from distant end also can be monitored similarly to obtain output from both sides of the data link. This can be transported to the monitoring center of the government law enforcement agency through local hired media for further analysis.

At the monitoring center, each such identified fiber link can be further analysed using an IP Probe for IP reconstruction, Deep Packet Inspection and IP analysis to identify the various protocols running and to be able to monitor target IP traffic. Target based monitoring using IP addresses, email addresses or other filtration criteria can be easily used to segregate the required traffic from the bulk data being processed. Specific information on targets regarding encrypted applications like Whatsapp, Skype, Telegram, Facebook etc. can also be obtained for further action by the agency.

The Shoghi Submarine Cable Monitoring System is a customized solution which is provided for government customers who wish to monitor international communications emanating from their country which can enhance intelligence gathering capabilities for improving the national security infrastructure of the nation.



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