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Border Gateway Protocol (BGP) is a standardized exterior gateway protocol designed to exchange routing and reachability information between autonomous systems (AS) on the Internet.

The protocol is often classified as a path vector protocol but is sometimes also classed as a distance-vector routing protocol. The Border Gateway Protocol makes routing decisions based on paths, network policies, or rule-sets configured by a network administrator and is involved in making core routing decisions. The current version of BGP is version 4 (BGP4) codified in RFC 4271 since 2006. Version 4 of BGP has been in use on the Internet since 1994. The major enhancement in version 4 was support for Classless Inter-Domain Routing and use of route aggregation to decrease the size of routing tables.

By design, routers running BGP accept advertised routes from other BGP routers by default. This allows for automatic and decentralized routing of traffic across the Internet, but it also leaves the Internet potentially vulnerable to accidental or malicious disruptions. Due to the extent to which BGP is embedded in the core systems of the Internet, and the number of different networks operated by many different organizations which collectively make up the Internet, correcting this vulnerability is a technically and economically challenging problem.

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