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11 Jun, 2021 18:04

French telecoms firm Orange blames software failure for network outage that disabled national emergency numbers

French telecoms firm Orange blames software failure for network outage that disabled national emergency numbers

A major network outage that prevented calls to emergency numbers in France last week was caused by a software failure, an internal inquiry by the country’s largest telecoms operator, Orange, has found.

Emergency numbers for the police, ambulance and fire service remained inaccessible for several hours on June 2, due to “a bug in the software of the calls servers,” the company said on Friday.

Orange said the source of the problem had since been identified and fixed by the supplier of the equipment involved, which it didn’t name. It stressed that network outage was a result of a glitch and not due to a cyberattack.

The French government, which holds a major stake in Orange, has ordered the National Agency for the Security of Information Systems to carry out a separate investigation into the incident, which is expected to take about two months.

Also on rt.com ‘Unacceptable dysfunctions’ that disabled emergency numbers stuns France, as 3 die amid chaos and govt summons Orange boss

President Emmanuel Macron earlier said that he had been “very concerned” by the outage, while Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin described it as “serious and unacceptable.”

Following the breakdown, Orange CEO Stephane Richard was summoned by the government to discuss the incident. Richard also offered his “deepest apologies” to the country over the disruption.

“Three or four people” died during the chaos caused by the outage, Health Minister Olivier Veran said in the wake of the incident. However, he added that it was too early to directly link those fatalities to the problems at Orange.

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