Friday 24 November 2017

BT broadband suffers major outage across UK

Telecoms giant BT has promised 'ultra-fast' broadband speeds of up to 300Mb by next spring
Telecoms giant BT has promised 'ultra-fast' broadband speeds of up to 300Mb by next spring

BT customers have been hit by one of the UK’s worst ever broadband collapses just 24 hours after the firm’s boss had rubbished claims it was providing poor service.

Between two and three million householders and businesses lost their connection for up to two hours, with some also losing phone connections.

The company denied it had been the victim of a hack or any security breach, blaming the problem on a major technical problem with one of its servers.

However sources admitted it was the biggest and most widespread network failure in years.

It will intensify pressure on BT Group’s chief executive Gavin Patterson to break up the company after MPs said it was further evidence that BT’s effective monopoly was unhealthy.

Grant Shapps, the Conservative MP behind a report last month into BT’s failure to deliver superfast service s to enough customers, said the network crash was “another indication of why it’s dangerous to have one telecoms company owning 40 per cent of the market place”, as BT will when its takeover of the mobile provider EE goes through.

The problems began on Tuesday at 2.42pm when BT suffered a “major equipment failure” in one of its routers, understood to be in London, which affected customers across the whole country who buy their broadband directly from BT or through smaller providers that use BT’s lines.

Industry sources said that while BT had suffered large network failures in the past, they tended to be confined to particular areas of the country, and a nationwide collapse was “almost unheard of”. One source said “I can’t remember another incident like it. There certainly hasn’t been anything like this in recent years.”

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