Internet outage

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

An Internet outage or Internet blackout can occur due to censorship, cyberattacks, disasters[1] or errors.

Disruptions of submarine communications cables may cause blackouts or slowdowns to large areas. Countries with a less developed Internet infrastructure are more vulnerable due to small numbers of high-capacity links.

A line of research finds that the Internet with it having a "hub-like" core structure that makes it robust to random losses of nodes but also fragile to targeted attacks on key components − the highly connected nodes or "hubs".[2]


Year Name Country or region Affected users Number of affected users (rough) Description Duration (rough) Internet component Cause Entity responsible Type
2008 2008 submarine cable disruption Middle East and Mediterranean Sea Three separate incidents of major damage to submarine optical communication cables around the world occurred in 2008. The first incident caused damage involving up to five high-speed Internet submarine communications cables in the Mediterranean Sea and Middle East from 23 January to 4 February 2008, causing internet disruptions and slowdowns for users in the Middle East and India.[3] In late February there was another outage, this time affecting a fiber optic connection between Singapore and Jakarta.[4] On 19 December, FLAG FEA, GO-1, SEA-ME-WE 3, and SEA-ME-WE 4 were all cut.[5][6][7] submarine cables Unknown Unknown
2011 2011 submarine cable disruption South Asia and Middle East In two incidents of submarine communications cables cut off on 25 December 2011. The first cut off occurred to SEA-ME-WE 3 at Suez canal, Egypt and the second cut off occurred to i2i which took place between Chennai, India and Singapore line. Both the incidents had caused the Internet disruptions and slowdowns for users in the South Asia and Middle East in particular UAE.[8][9][10][11] submarine cables Unknown Unknown
2012 2012 Syrian internet outage Syria On 29 November 2012 the Syrian Internet was cut off from the rest of the world. The autonomous system (AS29386) of Syrian Telecommunication Establishment (STE) was cut off completely at 10:26 UTC. Five prefixes were reported to have remained up, this is why Dyn[12] reports an outage of 92% of the country.

Responsibility for the outage has somewhat speculatively been blamed on various organizations.[13][14]

Unknown Unknown
2016  Germany Deutsche Telekom 900,000 At the end of November 2016 0.9 million routers, from Deutsche Telekom and produced by Arcadyan, were crashed due to failed TR-064 exploitation attempts by a variant of Mirai, which resulted in Internet connectivity problems for the users of these devices.[15][16] While TalkTalk later patched their routers, a new variant of Mirai was discovered in TalkTalk routers.[17][18][19] 1 day Internet routers cyberattack Unknown Full
2016  Liberia Unknown Mirai has also been used in an attack on Liberia's Internet infrastructure in November 2016.[20][21][22] cyberattack Unknown Full
2016 2016 Dyn cyberattack  United States Dyn (company) The cyberattack took place on October 21, 2016, and involved multiple distributed denial-of-service attacks (DDoS attacks) targeting systems operated by Domain Name System (DNS) provider Dyn, which caused major Internet platforms and services to be unavailable to large swathes of users in Europe and North America.[23][24] As a DNS provider, Dyn provides to end-users the service of mapping an Internet domain name—when, for instance, entered into a web browser—to its corresponding IP address. The distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attack was accomplished through a large number of DNS lookup requests from tens of millions of IP addresses.[25] The activities are believed to have been executed through a botnet consisting of a large number of Internet-connected devices—such as printers, IP cameras, residential gateways and baby monitors—that had been infected with the Mirai malware. With an estimated throughput of 1.2 terabits per second, the attack is, according to experts, the largest DDoS attack on record.[26] 1 day Domain Name System (DNS) provider cyberattack Unknown Major websites
2011  Armenia 3,000,000 A woman digging for scrap metal damaged land cables and thereby severed most connectivity for the nation of Armenia.[27] 5 hours land cables digging Full
2011  Egypt The Internet in Egypt was shut down by the government, whereby approximately 93%[28] of networks were without access in 2011 in an attempt to stop mobilization for anti-government protests.[29] ISPs government censorship  Egypt Full
2017  Cameroon South-West and North-West of Cameroon 20% of the country's population On January 17, around 20 percent of the people in Cameroon had their Internet blocked due to recent anti-government protests.[30][31][32] 270 days or 8 months government censorship  Cameroon Full
2019 Verizon and BGP Optimizer  United States Verizon (company) On June 24, 2019, many parts of the Internet faced an unprecedented outage as Verizon, the popular Internet transit provider accidentally rerouted IP packages after it wrongly accepted a network misconfiguration from a small ISP in Pennsylvania, USA.[33] According to The Register, systems around the planet were automatically updated, and connections destined for Facebook, Cloudflare, and others, ended up going through DQE and Allegheny, which buckled under the strain, causing traffic to disappear into a black hole.[34] 3 hours Internet transit provider misconfiguration Unknown Major websites


Internet outages can be prevented by a more resilient, decentralized Internet architecture.[35]


Modern society, especially in developed countries, depends heavily on the Internet not just for communication. There have been some measures taken and possibilities exist for managing and countering a large-scale Internet outage.[citation needed]

Temporary alternative forms of communication[edit]


See also[edit]


  1. ^ Petersen, Hauke; Baccelli, Emmanuel; Wählisch, Matthias; Schmidt, Thomas C.; Schiller, Jochen (27 October 2014). "The Role of the Internet of Things in Network Resilience" (PDF). Internet of Things. IoT Infrastructures. Springer, Cham: 283–296. arXiv:1406.6614. doi:10.1007/978-3-319-19743-2_39. Retrieved 19 February 2017.
  2. ^ Doyle, John C.; Alderson, David L.; Li, Lun; Low, Steven; Roughan, Matthew; Shalunov, Stanislav; Tanaka, Reiko; Willinger, Walter (11 October 2005). "The "robust yet fragile" nature of the Internet". Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. 102 (41): 14497–14502. Bibcode:2005PNAS..10214497D. CiteSeerX doi:10.1073/pnas.0501426102. ISSN 0027-8424. Retrieved 19 February 2017.
  3. ^ "Cable damage hits one million Internet Users". Khaleej News. 2008-02-04. Archived from the original on 9 February 2008. Retrieved 2008-02-04.
  4. ^ "Internet capacity down to 10%". The Jakarta Post. 2008-02-29. Archived from the original on 3 March 2008. Retrieved 1 March 2008.
  5. ^ Fried, Malcolm; Klemming, Lars (2008-12-19). "Severed Cables in Mediterranean Disrupt Communication (Update4)". Bloomberg. Retrieved 2009-01-12.
  6. ^ "GO submarine cable fault part of wider disruption between Italy and Egypt". 2008-12-19. Archived from the original on 25 December 2008. Retrieved 2009-01-12.
  7. ^ "Mediterrean submarine cables are cut, affecting internet". Telecompaper. 19 December 2008. Retrieved 2009-01-12.
  8. ^ "Deep sea cable snap will make Internet slower: du". 27 December 2011. Retrieved 27 December 2011.
  9. ^ "Cable cut slows down Internet in UAE". 26 December 2011. Retrieved 27 December 2011.
  10. ^ "Cable cuts could slow Emirates Internet". 26 December 2011. Retrieved 27 December 2011.
  11. ^ "du alerts customers over disruption in Internet services". 27 December 2011. Retrieved 27 December 2011.
  12. ^ "77 networks out in Syria - Internet Events Bulletin". Retrieved 2019-01-08.
  13. ^ "How Syria Turned Off the Internet". The Cloudflare Blog. 2012-11-29. Retrieved 2019-01-08.
  14. ^ Ackerman, Spencer (2014-08-13). "Snowden: NSA accidentally caused Syria's internet blackout in 2012". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 2019-01-08.
  15. ^ Krebs, Brian (30 November 2016). "New Mirai Worm Knocks 900K Germans Offline". Retrieved 14 December 2016.
  16. ^ "German leaders angry at cyberattack, hint at Russian involvement". Deutsche Welle. Retrieved 5 January 2017.
  17. ^ "New Mirai Variant Embeds in TalkTalk Home Routers". Retrieved 2016-12-18.
  18. ^ "Hackers suspected as 900,000 hit by internet outage". Retrieved 19 February 2017.
  19. ^ "German internet outage was failed botnet attempt: report". Reuters. 29 November 2016. Retrieved 19 February 2017.
  20. ^ "Unprecedented cyber attack takes Liberia's entire internet down". The Telegraph. Retrieved 21 November 2016.
  21. ^ "DDoS attack from Mirai malware 'killing business' in Liberia". PCWorld. Retrieved 21 November 2016.
  22. ^ "Massive cyber-attack grinds Liberia's internet to a halt". The Guardian. Retrieved 21 November 2016.
  23. ^ Etherington, Darrell; Conger, Kate. "Many sites including Twitter, Shopify and Spotify suffering outage". TechCrunch. Retrieved 2016-10-21.
  24. ^ "The Possible Vendetta Behind the East Coast Web Slowdown". Retrieved 2016-10-21.
  25. ^ Newman, Lily Hay. "What We Know About Friday's Massive East Coast Internet Outage". WIRED. Retrieved 2016-10-21.
  26. ^ Woolf, Nicky (2016-10-26). "DDoS attack that disrupted internet was largest of its kind in history, experts say". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 2016-10-28.
  27. ^ "Georgian woman cuts off web access to whole of Armenia". The Guardian. 6 April 2011. Retrieved 11 April 2012.
  28. ^ Cowie, James. "Egypt Leaves the Internet". Renesys. Archived from the original on 28 January 2011. Retrieved 28 January 2011.
  29. ^ "Egypt severs internet connection amid growing unrest". BBC News. 28 January 2011.
  30. ^ Condliffe, Jamie. "Cameroon's Internet outage is damaging the country's economy". MIT Technology Review. Retrieved 20 February 2017.
  31. ^ "Why has Cameroon blocked the internet?". BBC News. 8 February 2017. Retrieved 20 February 2017.
  32. ^ "Google coding champion whose Cameroon hometown is cut off from the internet". BBC News. 10 February 2017. Retrieved 20 February 2017.
  33. ^ "How Verizon and a BGP Optimizer caused a major internet outage affecting Amazon, Facebook, CloudFlare among others". Retrieved 2019-06-26.
  34. ^ "BGP super-blunder: How Verizon today sparked a 'cascading catastrophic failure' that knackered Cloudflare, Amazon, etc". The Register. 2019-06-24.
  35. ^ Hiner, Jason. "Takeaways from Egypt: Kill the kill switch and decentralize the Internet". ZDNet. Retrieved 19 February 2017.

External links[edit]