But the truth is, the Internet travels from continent to continent by way of a network of trans-oceanic cables, each thousands of miles long and only as thick around as a thumb. If enough of these high-pressure porn hoses were compromised, international Internet communication could collapse entirely.
Since these cables are the backbone of a huge portion of the global economy, they must be pretty well protected, right? Guards in armored diving suits, badass nuclear submarines inexplicably captained by Scotsmen, Kraken...
We're pretty sure AT&T has at least one of these at their disposal.
As it turns out, the cables aren't protected at all.
And it's not like they're impervious to damage either. The largest of them, hilariously named "SEA-ME-WE-3" was severed by a 7.1 magnitude earthquake, and in December of 2008 a boat anchor sliced it and three other cables in half. The disaster cut communications capacity between Europe, the Middle East and India by around 75 percent.
Hundreds of millions of people spent weeks without reliable (or, in some cases, any) Internet access. Because of an anchor.
Nukes are hard to come by, but we're pretty sure Al-Qaeda can scrounge up one of these.