Telecom regulator BIPT imposed a €190,000 fine on one of Belgium’s major operators. Telenet improperly handled storm damages to a critical datacenter. Furthermore, site security was found to be lacking.

According to the regulator, Telenet did not act with due diligence when securing a critical datacenter. The datacenter in question acts as a hub for the whole of Flanders and suffered damage during the Eunice storm. A tent was supposed to protect the infrastructure during the storm. According to BIPT, Telenet failed to take appropriate measures when the tent threatened to fly away and paralyze the datacenter.

Moreover, when BIPT investigated the incident, Telenet’s security was found to be lacking. People were able to walk into the building without appropriate restrictions, which exposed Belgian internet traffic to great risks.

Motivation

The telecom regulator indicates that an administrative fine on Telenet is justified because of the incident’s possible impact on the network, and therefore on the interests of end users.

BIPT clearly wants to set an example for other operators. Operators must strictly adhere to the requirements laid down in the Belgian Telecommunications Act, particularly where critical infrastructure is concerned. Moreover, the regulator wants to demonstrate that operators won’t get away without penalties by taking measures after a reprimand.

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