Copper theft leaves London disconnected

13 December 2013 |


Thousands of Sky broadband users in London, UK, have been knocked offline after copper cables were cut on UK incumbent BT’s infrastructure.

Yesterday, BT said that copper thieves had breached its Openreach broadband network, affecting an estimated 37,000 Sky customers, as well as number of BT and TalkTalk subscribers, which also use the network.

BT has blamed the outage on “malicious activity” and said in a statement: “Openreach does not tolerate criminal damage to its network. We will continue to work closely with the Metropolitan Police Service, assisting with their investigations to target cable theft criminals.”

27,000 Sky customers were reconnected late last night, and the company expects to connect the remaining 10,000 by the end of the day.

Areas affected by the outage are said to include Battersea, Beulah Hill, Chiswick, Dartford, Ewell, Hampstead, Mitcham, Stamford Hill and Wimbledon.

In July last year, rival UK operator O2 experienced a major network fault, cutting off thousands of O2 customers just weeks ahead of the 2012 Olympics.