How Dimension Data is dealing with massive spikes in traffic and remote working

South African data centre operator and telecoms company Dimension Data has seen a significant increase in peering traffic following the implementation of the national lockdown.

The lockdown was implemented to curb the spread of the coronavirus in South Africa and requires citizens to stay at home.

Workers employed in essential service industries are still allowed to travel to and from work.

The increase in people staying at home has resulted in a big spike in local Internet traffic, as well as the consumption of media across major platforms such as Netflix, YouTube, and Facebook.

MyBroadband spoke to Dimension Data about this change in traffic and how it has been affected by the lockdown.

Traffic increase

Dimension Data told MyBroadband it has recorded a significant increase in Netflix and Facebook traffic, as well as increased traffic during addresses by the president.

“We have seen a 25% overall increase in the amount of peering traffic exchanged to and from our content delivery nodes – a clear spike in content-based application consumption,” Dimension Data said.

“On-net content delivery to subscribers and peers through our open peering policy has increased by 40% for Netflix and Facebook.”

“On average, we see a 30Gbps spike in content delivery network traffic when President Cyril Ramaphosa addresses the nation, and it was interesting to note a 40% increase in GGC traffic during Andrea Bocelli’s free Easter concert over the weekend.”

Effect on business

Dimension Data said it has successfully implemented remote working and enabled its clients to continue operating their businesses with certain priority procedures in place for those classified as essential services.

“Our peering, transit, national, and international networks have had sufficient additional capacity to cater for the increased demand without needing to make any significant networking changes for our corporate clients,” Dimension Data said.

“Where consumer demand has seen an uptick in last-mile upgrades and consumption of broadband and fibre services, we have upgraded our IPC to cater for these increases.”

The company said it has measures in place to ensure that its business remains stable and ready to respond to the changing nature of the pandemic.

These include the freezing of all hiring and back-filling of roles, stopping all property refurbishments, and curtailing all discretionary spend.

“The ability to work, and to continue to work, from home relies on the technology and systems we have in place,” Dimension Data said.

“We are well-positioned in terms of our robust network infrastructure, data, and system security along with the required collaboration and communication technologies to continue delivering enterprise-level solutions for remote workers and supporting our clients’ evolving needs.”

Now read: New 111 number for COVID-19 national emergency services in South Africa

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How Dimension Data is dealing with massive spikes in traffic and remote working