VeriSign will spend more than $100 million improving its global internet infrastructure to tackle the growing number of hacking attacks and manage the increase in online activity, the company announced today.

Named "Project Titan", the initiative aims to expand the firm’s infrastructure tenfold by 2010, in order to cope with the surge in online traffic.  This includes shopping and banking on the web, social networking and the growing use of wireless devices and the strain it is putting on the internet, VeriSign said during the RSA Conference in San Francisco.

By increasing the capabilities of its infrastructure the California-based corporation also hopes to protect users and combat increasingly sophisticated cyber attacks.

"With the emergence of consumer-driven services and the surge in web-ready wireless devices, the internet we know today is radically different than the one we knew just five years ago," said Stratton Sclavos, chief executive officer and chairman of VeriSign. "We must make sure that VeriSign’s infrastructure is ready to support a new era of the internet, the ‘Any Era’, where billions of users demand anywhere, anytime, any device access to communications, information and entertainment."

The project aims to increase VeriSign's daily Domain Name Service (DNS) query capacity from 400 billion queries per day to over four trillion queries per day and boost its bandwidth from over 20 gigabits per second to more than 200 gigabits per second.

The company also said that the investment will improve the user experience by reducing bottlenecks and increasing network speed that is more widely distributed around the world.

"This is good for the whole internet infrastructure," Sclavos said. "If it fails, hundreds of billions of dollars in commerce and communications will be at risk. We cannot afford for that to happen."

Tim Callan, product marketing executive for VeriSign SSL, added: "This is a big initiative for VeriSign and is essential for the whole online economy to continue to run. This development is going to make it possible for the world to use the internet at the scale of expected levels and for us to be confident that we will be right there with the world every step of the way,"