Security Articles

Increase Efficiencies and Capabilities with IPv6

As Internet access has become increasingly ubiquitous, the massive number of connected devices and corresponding IP addresses (i.e., computers, cell phones, I-pads, TV, coffee makers, security devices, LED lights, and public spaces) has resulted in the governing body exhausting all the IP addresses in the IPv4 space. The result? The world is moving from IPv4 addressing to IPv6.

IPv4 has been the standard since the 1970s. It uses 32-bit addresses, which allows for 4.3 billion unique addresses at a maximum, which was sufficient decades ago but is no longer feasible with the incredible number of devices that connect to the Internet every day.


IPv6 has the added benefit of offering better control over scaling operations


The solution is IPv6, which utilizes 128-bit addressing, which equates to 340 trillion trillion trillion (undecillion) possible addresses. The change to IPv6 will not only ensure the Internet can continue its IP address growth rate indefinitely for all sorts of devices, but it will also cost organizations less­–– as you calculate the high cost for IPv4 IP addresses as opposed to the free cost of IPv6 IP addresses. IPv6 also has the added benefit of offering better control over scaling operations –– every customer has their own setup and can easily manage their own IP space.

If a business has plenty of available IPv4 addresses in inventory, a reliable Network Address Translation (NAT) infrastructure, and no IPv6-specific applications, it can experience little compulsion to take on the new integration of IPv6 into its network. However, in addition to the fact that many of the newer devices need IPv6 addresses (i.e., thermostats, motion sensors, security cameras, etc.), now more than ever, organizations need to have IPv6 on their strategic roadmap and move IPv6 deployment higher on the to-do list.

Here are a few specific reasons why:


Not being IPv6-ready can make a business inaccessible in parts of the world where IPv4 addresses have run out


Global Accessibility:
Not being IPv6-ready can make a business inaccessible in parts of the world where IPv4 addresses have already run out.

Mobile Internet Services:
The native backbone protocol of 4G and 5G mobile networks is IPv6.

IoT (Internet of Things):
The communication technologies inherent in these innovations all utilize IPv6.

Network Mobility:
The new communication systems operate between components within a vehicle using IPv6 transport. With IPv4, when you go from a private to a public space, you need a device/software to do a conversion. IPv6 does it automatically. IPV6 also automatically does multicast streaming.

Along with the increased address space, there are key benefits for enterprises to upgrade to IPv6, including:

IPv6 not only provides a powerful foundation for rolling out new and improved services, but it can also help to revolutionize the way people and devices interact online for end-to-end connections across virtually any type of network.


IPv6 makes it easier to just plug and play


IPv6 makes it easier to just plug and play since it incorporates and supports new technologies such as machine-to-machine (M2M) communications and IoT.

Other expected improvements include the elimination of Network Address Translation to provide true end-to-end connectivity at the IP layer, helping to enable the support of new services. This transparency allows peer-to-peer applications such as VoIP or streaming media to work more smoothly and efficiently.

Mobile IPv6 allows mobile devices to continuously update a server with location information, improving performance, reliability, and seamless mobility. This means that mobility and collaboration services will become much easier to develop, deploy and use, increasing employee productivity.

Because many new devices now have IPv6 enabled by default, organizations can more easily support and incorporate BYOD (bring your own device) into the network strategy. Directly connected to the public Internet and with less configuration needed to create a network, IPv6 also eliminates IP-level checksum, making packet processing more efficient.

IPv6 is a significant improvement over IPv4; however, enterprises need to carefully plan this migration safely and cost-effectively, with the minimum impact on their operations.

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