Technical fault in PTCL fibre optics causes massive Internet outage across Pakistan

05:45 PM | 26 Dec, 2016
Technical fault in PTCL fibre optics causes massive Internet outage across Pakistan
KARACHI - Besides strong citicism, the Pakistan Telecommunication Company Limited (PTCL) is facing major technical issues in its fibre optics that caused a massive Internet blackout across the country on Monday.

Internet speed across Pakistan plummeted by nearly 60 per cent on Monday when a major technical issue surfaced in Karachi and Balochistan.

The damage mainly affected Pakistan Telecommunication Company Limited (PTCL) and its sister company Ufone, with users experiencing service outages in various parts of Pakistan.

The main cities affected include Karachi, Lahore, Islamabad along with several others.

In a Facebook post, PTCL confirmed that its services were impacted and they were working to restore them.

However, Internet service providers were unable to provide a timeframe on when the problem will be resolved.

Earlier, some social media users came up with reports that they received automated calls from PTCL, informing them about a planned upgrade activity on Monday.

The main services disrupted include PTCL landline, DSL and Ufone cellular services. The exact number of impacted users or areas is still not known.

Pakistan Telecommunications Company Limited (PTCL) acts as the internet gateway to Pakistan, providing bandwidth to local Internet service providers. TWA and PTCL are connected with four undersea fiber optic cables that include I-ME-WE, SEA-ME-WE-3, SEA-ME-WE-4 and TWA-1.

The country’s Internet traffic is currently running on SEA-ME-WE-3and TWA-1 and catering to the entire telecommunications traffic.


SEA-ME-WE 4 provides a telecommunications link between Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Bangladesh, India, Sri Lanka, Pakistan, United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Egypt, Italy, Tunisia, Algeria and France.

The cable is approximately 18,800 kilometres long, and provides the primary internet backbone between South East Asia, the Indian subcontinent, the Middle East and Europe.