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Vandals Cause Silicon Valley Comms Blackout

Ah, the irony: High tech is suffering a techless fate, as a massive phone and Internet outage has darkened Silicon Valley. More disturbingly, the culprit appears to be a vandal, who slipped in through a manhole to sever several fiber-optic cables in the San Jose, Calif. area.

Verizon Communications Inc. and AT&T Inc. landline and mobile customers in Santa Clara and Santa Cruz counties began reporting a communications blackout on Thursday. Some data centers and therefore Web sites may also be affected, and the outage also disrupts 911 emergency systems.

According to police, the AT&T cables were deliberately severed, causing a loss of telephone and Internet service in San Jose and other communities. Verizon uses AT&T transport in the area, which is why its customers too were affected.

No word on who the vandal or vandals could be yet. Representatives from the carriers said they were working to restore service by the evening.


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