The UK's position in the middle of the information superhighway has been highlighted by the latest stateoftheinternet report from web content delivery firm Akamai.
Akamai's findings are based on information on slightly more than 444 million unique IP addresses from 226 countries that connected to the Akamai network in Q3 2009. This was 4.5% more than in Q2, and 17% more than the same quarter in 2008.
Its report for the third quarter of 2009 showed that the UK failed to make the top ten list of fastest countries with high broadband connectivity, though several other European countries did, including Ireland.
The UK was ranked 26th globally for its average connection speeds, with 73% of UK IP addresses observed by Akamai having a connection speed above 2Mbps.
Cyber attacks came from 207 countries with Russia and Brazil knocking the USA and China off the top spot, Akamai said. "Port 445 was overwhelmingly the top port targeted by attacks from these countries, which may indicate the presence of a large number of systems participating in Confiker botnets," it said.
Akamai saw a steady shift to broadband connections as the number of countries with connections speeds of less than 256kpbs dropped compared to those that saw a rise in connection speeds, it said. It said 103 of the 226 countries measured had average connection speeds below 1Mbps, down from 125 countries in the prior quarter.
The US and China still account for nearly 40% of the observed IP addresses. The UK saw a 12% increase on 2008 to 19.4 million IP addresses. This put it sixth in the top ten countries, with a population penetration rate of 32%.
Current highlights and historical trends for average connection speeds on a global basis can be found in Akamai's Broadband Adoption Trends.