Egyptian authorities arrested three men off the coast of Alexandria for attempting to sever an undersea Internet cable. The SEA-ME-WE 4 main line was part of a cable network that spanned the Mediterranean and connects Southeast Asia, the Middle East and Western Europe and has 39 landing points, including Alexandria.
Seacom, a cable operator, said that the attacks reduced network speed in Egypt. The line belonged to Telecom Egypt.
“The armed forces foiled an attempt and arrested three divers while they were cutting a submarine cable,” said an Egyptian spokesperson.
Lines off the coast of Egypt have been cut multiple times, most notably in 2008 when three lines were ostensibly cut by ship anchors. “SEACOM can confirm that at 06:20 GMT 27 March, the SMW4 cable system suffered a cable cut off the coast of Egypt. Earlier this morning, SEACOM had restored all services on both SMW4 and IMEWE cable systems,” read an announcement on Seacom’s news page.
Egyptian authorities are interrogating the men, who remain unnamed.