JERUSALEM Feb 4 Pelephone, Israel's
third-largest mobile phone carrier, said on Monday it had
restored service to millions of customers following a four-hour
network outage and would compensate its customers.
Pelephone, a unit of Israel's largest telecoms group, Bezeq
Israel Telecom, has some 3 million subscribers, many
of whom were prevented from receiving or making calls and
sending text messages when the network went down late on Sunday.
It was not immediately known what caused the outage, which
also impacted virtual operators that use Pelephone's network.
Pelephone chief executive, Gil Sharon, told reporters that
customers could choose the compensation - 60 minutes of free
calls within Israel or to the United States and Europe, or 500
MB of Internet surfing. He did not say how much it would cost
Bezeq shares fell 1.4 percent in a flat Tel Aviv market on
Sharon said the fault occurred around 7 pm (1700 GMT) on
Sunday and was fixed by local engineers and from Ericsson and
Hewlett Packard before 11 pm.
He ruled out Israeli media speculation that a cyber attack
had brought the network down.
Israel's Communications Ministry summoned Pelephone
officials on Tuesday to explain the outage. It has recently laid
down a number of guidelines to deal with such incidents.
Market leader Cellcom suffered a 12-hour
outage in its network in December 2010.
Bezeq's mobile phone unit has suffered intense competition
from the entry of six new operators in 2012, which sparked a
price war. Pelephone's net profit fell 41 percent in the third