Time Warner Cable reports major outage; New York launches probe

Reuters News
Posted: Aug 27, 2014 10:51 AM

(Reuters) - Time Warner Cable Inc the No. 2 U.S. cable operator, reported a massive network outage that shut down Internet services to some 11 million customers on Wednesday, prompting New York state to launch an investigation.

The outage to all of the company's residential and business Internet customers began at about 4:30 a.m. EDT, said Time Warner Cable spokesman Bobby Amirshahi. Services were “largely restored” by 6 a.m and "a majority, if not all" were back on line as of 8 a.m., he said.

He said the company was investigating the precise cause of the outage, which also disrupted some video services.

"During our routine network maintenance, an issue with our Internet backbone created disruption with our Internet and On-Demand services," he said via email.

The outage affected 2 percent of all U.S. Internet networks, according to Renesys, a firm that monitors global Internet activity.

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo ordered the state's Department of Public Service to investigate the disruption as part of its pending review of the company's $45 billion proposed merger with Comcast Corp, the largest U.S. cable provider.

“Dependable Internet service is a vital link in our daily lives and telecommunications companies have a responsibility to deliver reliable service to their customers,” Cuomo said in a statement.

The outage came one day after the company agreed to pay $1.1 million to U.S. regulators who found the company did not did not file all the proper paperwork to report multiple network outages last year.

The Federal Communications Commission is reviewing that deal, along with other authorities including New York's Department of Public Service.

(Reporting by Jim Finkle in Boston and Marina Lopes and Alina Selyukh in Washington and Mary Wisniewski in Chicago; Editing by Jeffrey Benkoe and Cynthia Osterman)