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PLDT DSL, mobile phone users lose Internet connections

MANILA, Philippines—Thousands of digital subscriber line (DSL) and mobile device users lost their Internet connections on Wednesday due to problems with one of Philippine Long Distance Telephone Co.’s (PLDT) servers responsible for assigning Internet Protocol (IP) addresses to users.

The problem was isolated to Metro Manila, and affected only select subscribers in various areas. Connection problems started late Wednesday morning, but service was restored to normal around 3 p.m.

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“There was no single location. Some people were affected, some were not,” PLDT public affairs head Ramon Isberto said in an interview.

“(The outage) had something to do with one of the servers that assigned IP addresses,” Isberto said. IP addresses are assigned to all devices connected to the Internet as a way to organize traffic on the web. Without an IP address, a device would not be able to transmit or receive data.

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“We regret to inform you that residents of Metro Manila may experience difficulty due to a technical failure,” a PLDT advisory to users said.

Subscribers on PLDT’s mobile subsidiary, Smart Communications, were also affected by the outage.

The company declined to give estimates on how much it lost due to the outage, or exactly how many users were affected. The company was also mum on the possibility of a refund.

The National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) said handing out refunds would be PLDT’s prerogative.

“Rebates depend on the network’s agreements with individual subscribers,” NTC common carriers division head Edgardo Cabarios said. The NTC’s policymaking board, however, may order penalties.

The only rule in case of outages is that networks report any incident to the NTC for the sake of transparency, according to Cabarios. “That’s in their franchise. They have to report this under their specific authorizations,” he said.

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TOPICS: digital subscriber line, Internet, mobile phones, Philippine Long Distance Telephone Co. (PLDT), technology, Telecommunications
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