Cut cable slams web service in Egypt, India

MUMBAI - A breakdown in an international undersea cable network has badly disrupted internet links to India and Egypt.

Egypt's Telecommunications Ministry said a communications cable in the Mediterranean was cut, disrupting 70 per cent of the country's internet network.

The ministry said in a statement it was not known how the cable was cut but that services would probably take several days to return to normal.

India reported serious disruptions to its services and one Indian internet service provider linked the problem to the Egyptian outage.

"There has been a cable cut on several cable systems in Alexandria, Egypt which has impacted internet connectivity in India," Videsh Sanchar Nigam Ltd (VSNL), an internet service provider, said in a statement.

VSNL said its service had been "largely restored" by diverting to another cable.

India said it had lost more than half of its capacity.

"There has been a 50 to 60 per cent cut in bandwidth," Rajesh Chharia, president of the internet Service Providers' Association of India, told Reuters.

He told the Headlines Today news channel that a "degraded" service would be activated by Wednesday night, but full restoration will take 10 to 15 days.

Chharia said companies, including some of India's many outsourcing businesses, had been affected.


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