A new domestic Internet exchange point will open in Winnipeg on Wednesday, the Canadian Internet Registration Authority (CIRA) said. In a release Tuesday, CIRA said the non-profit Manitoba Internet Exchange (MBIX) will allow Winnipeg’s Internet users to exchange their online traffic directly, as opposed to sending their data signals to other exchange points in Canada or the United States to interconnect with other online networks. “The launch of MBIX is an important milestone in our continuing effort to facilitate the creation of a domestic Internet infrastructure that is more secure, resilient and affordable,” CIRA president and CEO Byron Holland said in the release. Internet exchange points allow Internet service providers (ISPs) and companies that operate their own networks, such as Google Inc. or Microsoft Corp., to connect to the Internet and exchange traffic through a single, centrally located hub. They are typically found in large, urban centres with multiple ISPs such as Toronto and Montreal. A traffic exchange, known as “peering,” allows Internet traffic on one ISP’s network to connect with other networks and ISPs. CIRA, which helped launch the new Internet exchange point in Montreal in April, said last year that it wants Canadian network operators to launch exchange points in at least eight more major urban centres, including Vancouver, Quebec City, Edmonton and Windsor, Ont.