Paris’s Prosecutor’s Office opened an investigation into Wednesday’s downtime of France’s Internet network. This probe follows reports of coordinated vandalism.
The French Telecoms Federation said attacks of vandalism had impacted telecoms networks in several regions, including the Ile-de-France region around Paris, eastern France and the Auvergne-Rhone-Alpes and Bourgogne-France-Comte regions.
According to the prosecutor’s bureau, the investigation will be co-handled by France’s national Intelligence Services and the judicial Police.
Cedric O, Minister of Digital Affairs, earlier stated on Twitter that internet cables had been cut in Ile-de-France. This affected both the mobile and landline networks. The ministry is working closely with operators to restore service.
Altice’s French operator for telecoms SFR claimed the group was the victim to vandalism that affected its broadband fiber optic network at 3:00 a.m. Wednesday (0100 GMT).
The spokesperson stated that the attack was caused by long-distance cables linking Paris to Lyon and Strasbourg.
These cables connect large hubs with the internet and broadband network. This could impact both customers directly and operators renting SFR’s network, such as Free who pointed out vandalism through its tweet.
SFR declined to provide further details about the location of underground cables that had been damaged. SFR declined further information about when service would resume or how many affected customers may be affected.
According to an industry source, another long-distance fibre connection linking Paris and Lille was also lost.
Orange, a French competitor, said that the fibre network was not being affected.
French media reported major internet outages in large European cities like Paris, Lyon, and Bordeaux. Officials suspected vandalism and sabotage.
Le Parisien newspaper reported that underground cables were being destroyed in France’s Seine-et-Marne and Essone regions. These cables were also said to be connecting Paris and Lyon.
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