Atomic clocks are well-known for being accurate. Most people may never have seen one but are probably aware that atomic clocks keep highly precise time. In fact modern atomic clock will keep accurate time and not lose a second in one hundred million years.
This amount of precision may seem overkill but a multitude of modern technologies rely on atomic clocks and require such a high level of precision. A perfect example is the satellite navigation systems now found in most auto cars. GPS is reliant on atomic clocks because the satellite signals used in triangulation travel at the speed of light which in a single second can cover nearly 100,000 km.
So it can be seen how some modern technologies rely on this ultra precise timekeeping from atomic clocks but their use doesn’t stop there. Atomic clocks govern the world’s global timescale UTC (Coordinated Universal Time) and they can also be used to synchronise computer networks too.
It may seem extreme to use this nanosecond precision to synchronise computer networks too but as many time sensitive transactions are conducted across the internet with such trades as the stock exchange where prices can fall or rise each and every second it can be seen why atomic clocks are used.
To receive the time from an atomic clock a dedicated NTP server is the most secure and accurate method. These devices receive a time signal broadcast by either atomic clocks from national physics laboratories or direct from the atomic clocks onboard GPS satellites.
By using a dedicated NTP server a computer network will be more secure and as it is synchronised to UTC (the global timescale) it will in effect be synchronised with every other computer network using a NTP server.