Telomeres are crucial components required for genomic stability. Telomere dysfunction can result in enormously elevated rates of chromosomal alterations, particularly in subtelomeric regions. Interestingly, the chromosomal regions in the vicinity of telomeres are often among the most rapidly evolving in the genome. These facts could suggest that the protective capping function of telomeres has not evolved to be fail-safe but instead to permit a certain rate of failure that can foster evolution through subtelomeric rearrangements.