US: Russian submarines increasingly operate at international internet cable

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The US defense is concerned that Russian submarines and spy ships are investigating how to attack international Internet cables. The Russians would search for vulnerabilities of cables at great depths.

The Pentagon is said to have observed increased activity of Russian submarines and spy ships near the internet cables on the seabed. Defense in the US would now fear that the Russians are looking for vulnerabilities in the cables, deep in the ocean.

If the cables break, repair would then be seriously difficult and the US could be cut off from the internet backbones for a long time. That’s what the Pentagon fears, according to The New York Times.

The US is also afraid that the Russians are looking for the secret communication cables. The locations of most submarine lines are not secret and they have been rolled out in the same places for decades, but in addition there are secret fiber optic cables for military purposes.

The cables are also crucial for the US to gather intelligence. The Snowden documents revealed that the US and UK spy services are tapping data traffic at the submarine cables on a large scale.

The NSA is no stranger to tapping specifically Russian cables. In the 1970s, the US espionage service already focused on being able to intercept a Russian submarine cable used for military communications during Operation Ivy Bells. During that secret operation, an American submarine found a place where an eavesdropping device could be placed around the cable.

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