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[freehaven-dev] speaking of china's net connection

this is from RISKS...
makes you wonder.

Date: Thu, 22 Mar 2001 15:20:56 -0800
From: Tin Tin <onuj23@juno.com>
Subject: Cyber surfers caught by fishing nets

>From : http://www.theaustralian.com.au/

Cyber surfers caught by fishing nets, AFP, 22 Mar 2001

China's Internet links with the US are threatened by the anchor nets used by
the country's fishing industry.  *The Shanghai Daily* reported on 21 Mar
2001 that fishing equipment had snagged underwater cables off the coast of
Shanghai three times in the past two months, causing havoc for millions of
Net surfers. And officials fear the problem could worsen, the paper said.
China's main fishing season has just begun and industry officials say they
lack sufficient legal power to stop further damage, the report added.

The problem centres on a type of fishing net developed in South Korea that
uses anchors sunk into the seabed.  Strong tides can drag the anchors --
which are sunk lower into the seabed than Internet cables, for distances of
up to 8km -- severing communications links.

Anchor nets are due to be phased out by 2006, but China's Ministry of the
Information Industry and the Ministry of Agriculture, which regulate the
Internet and fishing industry, are still working on an interim solution.
For the next three months, however, authorities in Shanghai can do little
but increase patrol boats in the cable areas to warn fishermen away, and
industry officials warn that may not be sufficient to prevent a severe
breakdown in communications.

The first serious break occurred on 9 Feb 2001 about 370km off China's
coast, severing the main Internet link between China and the US.  Although
communications were partially restored during a repair process that
stretched over two weeks, 22.5 million customers, including many in
Shanghai, suffered slow service, the paper reported.  On 9 Mar, the
Internet backbone linking Taiwan and Shanghai was cut by a fishing net about
120km south of the city, affecting four million users.

When that split was finally repaired on 19 Mar, authorities found another
break in the undersea cable that will disrupt Internet services for a
further two weeks.  Each break costs about six million UN ($1.4 million) to
repair, in addition to unknown business losses resulting from the Internet