IP addresses, which are fundamental to pinpoint the identity of every computer any networks, are running out at a frightening speed according to the Number Resource Organisation and could lead to major issues in as little as 24 months.
The organisation, which is in charge of monitoring the remaining IPv4 addresses say that almost nine of every ten IPv4 addresses have already been taken and is urging businesses and governments to move to the more future proof IPv6.
There were nearly 4.295 billion addresses (thanks to the 12 digits combinations from 0.0.0.0 to 255.255.255.255) available at the beginning, a number that has shrunk over the years as the amount of devices connected to the internet exploded.
Axel Pawlik, chairman of the NRO, stated that "We've seen some governments such as the Germans and Japanese take good steps to prepare for a switchover to IPv6, and it's important that others take this lead to help educate organisations about the switchover".
He also warned that any further procrastination could have disastrous effects on the future of the internet and businesses who rely on the web for their day-to-day operations.
A survey carried out amongst public and private organisations in Europe, Asia and Africa by the European Commission found out that only a sixth of the entities had upgraded from IPv4 to IPv6.
The move, which can be done fairly easily, does carry a hefty cost due to new hardware being installed and is something that requires testing and preparation. It is likely that companies are shying away from the upgrades because of the associated costs.