Local News

Thousands Across Region Knocked Offline By BellSouth Outage

Posted October 18, 2006

— Some 3.3 million

BellSouth

high-speed Internet access customers were not able to get online due to a massive outage that lasted more than 12 hours.

Digital subscriber line, or DSL, subscribers lost their Internet connectivity Monday night at 11:30, and the outage continued into Tuesday afternoon. The network was restored at around 1 p.m., a BellSouth spokesperson told WRAL.com.

“The outage happened last night, we are working on it, and we expect it to be back up by the end of Tuesday,” he added.

The outage did not affect voice call capability, the spokesperson explained.

BellSouth issued an apology on its Web site. Asked if the company might add credits or refunds due to loss of service, the spokesperson said: "We haven't gotten to that point yet."

BellSouth attributed the DSL outage to a “network element” but would not define the outage in any further detail

All services, including premium FastAccess DSL Xtreme, were affected across the nine-state BellSouth coverage area, the spokesperson added.

DSL services deliver Internet access at much faster speeds than regular dialup modem service. BellSouth and other telecommunications service providers position DSL as an alternative to broadband access offered by cable TV companies. The service starts at $24.95 per month and allows customers to talk at the same time they access the Internet.

The DSL business has been an area of growth for BellSouth, which is seeking approval to merge with AT&T.

The regional Bell operating company, which covers much of the Southeast, reported nearly 3.3 million DSL subscribers as of June 30. BellSouth added 128,000 DSL subscribers in June. Of its customer base, more than 25 percent pay for premium service.

Overall, BellSouth reported 19.3 million lines in service as of June 30. That reflected a drop of 460,000 from March.

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