US ATTACK: Attacks disrupt communications

The collapse of the two World Trade Center towers in New York this morning has already started to take its toll on the nation's communications backbone, with Sprint reporting traffic disruptions caused by the collapse of the towers on 27 DS3 circuits and switches housed in the basement.

          The collapse of the two World Trade Center towers in New York this morning has already started to take its toll on the nation's communications backbone, with Sprint reporting traffic disruptions caused by the collapse of the towers on 27 DS3 circuits and switches housed in the basement.

          Spokesman for the two other carriers, AT&T and WorldCom, couldn't be reached. Calls placed to AT&T offices in Basking Ridge, New Jersey, and WorldCom offices in Washington couldn't get through, potentially indicative of a larger problem.

          Mark Bonovia, a spokesman for Sprint in Kansas City, Missouri, says the company didn't "know the extent of the traffic disruptions" as of 10am EDT or whether the company's nationwide network had started to "shunt" itself from the New York circuits.

          Sprint has all but evacuated its Washington office, according to spokesman James Fisher, although the evacuation was on a voluntary basis. Fisher says, "We're right across the street from the FBI building. ... No one really wants to stay here."

          The nationwide Defense Department communications network appears to have survived the terrorist attack on the Pentagon. Lt. Cmdr. Greg Geisen, spokesman for the Space and Naval Warfare Systems Command (SPAWAR), with headquarters in San Diego, says SPAWAR has "full connectivity" with the Naval and Marine Corps Intranet operated by Electronic Data Systems, with circuits provided by WorldCom. Geisen added that SPAWAR has increased its security level to ThreatCon Charlie, one of the highest states of alert, with the highest level ThreatCon Delta.

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