Winter storms leave Israel’s undersea internet, phone cables exposed
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Winter storms leave Israel’s undersea internet, phone cables exposed

Hadashot news finds makeshift fence and lone guard are all that protect sensitive communications infrastructure

Illustrative: A beach near Haifa, September 14, 2015. (Hadas Parush/Flash90 )
Illustrative: A beach near Haifa, September 14, 2015. (Hadas Parush/Flash90 )

Two undersea communications cables linking Israel with the rest of the world have been exposed on a beach near the northern city of Haifa, according to a television report on Sunday.

The two thick cables, reportedly carrying fiber-optic wires, were apparently uncovered by last week’s stormy weather that saw Israel’s coast battered by fierce winds and high tides, Hadashot news reported.

The report did not identify the location of the conduits other than noting it was south of the port city.

In footage from the beach, passersby could be seen strolling close to the cables.

According to the television channel, the cables represent a significant portion of the country’s phone and internet infrastructure.

Hadashot first reported on the exposed cables last Friday. Since then, a temporary wire barrier was erected at the site. A guard was also stationed on Sunday at the site, though Hadashot news said the man seemed to have little idea of what he was tasked with safeguarding.

Israel’s undersea “connection to the world” exposed on a beach near Haifa, February 4, 2018 (Hadashot news screenshot)

Two years ago, the cables were also uncovered by the weather. At the time, defense officials dispatched a guard detail to watch over the infrastructure until it could be reburied in the sand.

Israel last month signed a deal with a Cypriot company to lay a new undersea system that will greatly improve internet communication speed. The new system is scheduled to come online in 2020.

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