Sweden to investigate telecom operator Tele2's June network outage

STOCKHOLM (Reuters) - Sweden launched an inquiry on Friday into a national network outage at telecoms company Tele2 TEL2b.ST in June that knocked out voice calls for a many private customers and companies for several hours.

Tele2, Sweden’s second-largest telecoms company which also operates in the Baltic countries, said this month it had begun an audit of its mobile network, after experiencing three crippling outages in the last 12 months.

Sweden’s National Post and Telecom Agency (PTS) said its review would look into Tele2’s most recent outage on June 17-19, due to the extent of the disruption.

It said disruptions was particularly serious because it had affect users’ ability to dial emergency service numbers.

“PTS will therefore thoroughly review what has happened and why, what Tele2 has done to solve the problems, and what the company is doing so that it doesn’t happen again,” Linus Kilander, responsible for the PTS review, said in a statement.

A Tele2 spokesman said the issue arose due to a combination of hardware and software faults and that it affected fixed, mobile and IP-based calls.

CEO Anders Nilsson previously told Reuters the issue was not due to a cyber attack or security breach.

Tele2 said it supported decision to launch a review.

The Dutch government launched an inquiry last month into an outage in the Netherlands at telecoms company KPN KPN.AS that also knocked out emergency service numbers for nearly four hours. The company blamed a software error.

Reporting by Esha Vaish; Editing by Anna Ringstrom and Edmund Blair