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Saturday, December 20, 2008

Serious Disruption To Telecom / Internet Service Between Europe, Middle East, and Asia

Three of Four under water cables representing the backbone of telecommunications and Internet connectivity between Europe, Asia, and the Middle East have been severed and it may take more than a week to fix the situation. While the cause of the break is yet unknown, there were reported seismic activity before the disruption to service was detected.

"We've lost three out of four lines. If the fourth cable breaks, we're looking at a total blackout in the Middle East," Jonathan Wright - director of wholesale products at Interoute, the company that manages part of the optical fibre network, told the BBC.

"These three circuits account for 90% of the traffic and we're going to see more international phone calls dropping and a huge degradation in the quality of local internet," he added.

"Normally you would expect to see one major break per cable per year. With four you should have an insurance policy. For this to happen twice in one year, on the same cable, is a serious cause for concern."