Cascading(?)Failures Revisited

Recently came across the paper below on the Los ALamos site and it
addresses a topic discussed earlier about how traffic is redistributed
when a node is compromised. When the researchers included capacity
loads in their equations they find some pretty severe consequences (3000
of 5000 disconnected by one nodal failure in the simulation), but the
(real-world) analysis is done on the AS network and I believe there was
talk of cascading failures not applying to the Internet in the first
place.

I was curious what assumptions the folks on NANOG would suggest if you
were trying to model how traffic would be redistributed in the event of
a node or mulitple node failure. Any input would be greatly
appreciated.

Cascade-based attacks on complex networks

http://xxx.lanl.gov/PS_cache/cond-mat/pdf/0301/0301086.pdf

We live in a modern world supported by large, complex networks. Examples
range from financial markets
to communication and transportation systems. In many realistic
situations the flow of physical quantities in the
network, as characterized by the loads on nodes, is important. We show
that for such networks where loads can
redistribute among the nodes, intentional attacks can lead to a cascade
of overload failures, which can in turn
cause the entire or a substantial part of the network to collapse. This
is relevant for real-world networks that
possess a highly heterogeneous distribution of loads, such as the
Internet and power grids. We demonstrate that
the heterogeneity of these networks makes them particularly vulnerable
to attacks in that a large-scale cascade
may be triggered by disabling a single key node. This brings obvious
concerns on the security of such systems.