Advances and Opportunities for the Growth of Internet Exchange Points (IXPs)


Advances and Opportunities for the Growth of Internet Exchange Points (IXPs)

By Gabriel Adonaylo – Coordinador de LAC-IX, Israel Rosas – Director, Partnerships and Internet Development de Internet Society, Mauricio Oviedo – Technical Outreach Manager en LAC-IX

Over the recent years, the peering ecosystem in the Latin American and Caribbean region has undergone a substantial transformation in direct response to the ongoing digital revolution within the region. Internet Exchange Points (IXPs) have become a fundamental component of the region’s Internet infrastructure, serving as hubs for local technical communities. Although progress has been significant, there are still opportunities for further collaboration at both levels.

The Internet is Only as Resilient as its Infrastructure

Since 2018, LACNIC, LAC-IX and the Internet Society have promoted a program in favor of strengthening IXPs in the region. This program has resulted in the deployment of 5 new IXPs within the region and the strengthening of 10 existing IXPs through 17 projects.

Thanks to the collaborative approach of this alliance, the IXPs have been able to participate in various working groups, reaching out to the community to discuss improvements, solve problems together and increase consistency in the implementation of best operating practices. 

As a result, 36% of LAC-IX members have adopted the actions suggested by best routing practices (MANRS) to improve the security of the routing system, while 86% have implemented IPv6. In addition, 49% of IXPs have incorporated RPKI origin validation.

Despite significant progress, there are still actions to be implemented. Only 25% of IXPs in the region have a route collector and 18% have integrated AS112. Therefore, the three organizations extend an invitation to IXP operators to connect with established groups, offering valuable advice on crucial considerations for implementing improvements in their infrastructure and services.

A Community of Experts

The Latin American and Caribbean Association of Traffic Exchange Points (LAC-IX) maintains that one of the impacts of the program has been the generation of a framework for the implementation of best operating practices in IXPs, which has made it possible to collaborate with the region’s existing IXPs to help them reach the baseline.

Another high point of the program has been training and coaching, including in-person training sessions. The first session was held at LACNIC 40, in Fortaleza, Brazil, with IXP technicians. Throughout 2023, various subjects were addressed, such as routing best practices, Internet quality measurement, VXLAN technology, use of PeeringDB, protection of peering platforms, BGP best practices and filtering, and the significance of DNS for IXPs, among others. There will be a second face-to-face meeting with LAC-IX technicians during the LACNIC 42/LACNOG 2024 meeting.

The training sessions are part of a broader initiative organized by the Technical Operators Working Group, facilitated by LAC-IX. The group comprises 86 participants representing 28 IXPs.

This kind of activity allows them to learn new technologies, solutions and best practices and also encourages the exchange of knowledge and experiences among participants. In our region, we boast a wealth of experience in IXP development, allowing us to guide the projects that have been incorporated over the years.

More Than Peering

After several years of continuous improvements in infrastructure and technical operations, traffic exchange points have now taken the next step: we are no longer only Internet infrastructure but also points of reference in the communities. We actively participate in discussions involving multiple stakeholders, where the technical perspective holds significant importance.

We are seen as a point of reference in our communities. IXPs have begun engaging in policy processes and contributing to technical forums with specific proposals. Their local communities are evolving into authoritative voices.

This participation is very refreshing for us in Internet discussions, allowing us to incorporate the perspectives of IXP representatives.

Collaborative efforts between ISOC, LAC-IX, and LACNIC generate new spaces for discussions and networking between IXPs and new actors, contributing to a more influential presence within Internet ecosystems.

If you are interested in creating a traffic exchange point and value diverse perspectives and insights, please reach out to We also invite you to view the interactive map of LAC-IX that shows the positions of over 100 operational IXP points across the region.

The views expressed are those of the author of this blog post and do not necessarily reflect the views of LACNIC.

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