x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 28 July 2017

Hackers disrupt online meeting of internet regulation committee in Dubai

One of the websites of the World Conference on International Telecommunications, which is under way in Dubai, was disrupted for two hours on Wednesday.

DUBAI // The work of a key committee at the global conference that is determining the future of the internet has been disrupted by an apparent hacking attack.

One of the websites of the World Conference on International Telecommunications, which is under way in Dubai, was disrupted for two hours on Wednesday.

Members of Committee 5, the main working group, were unable to call up documents they needed for their deliberations. The conference, run by the International Telecommunication Union (ITU), is a paperless event - documents can only be accessed online.

Members of the public and the media were prevented from following the proceedings.

The ITU, a United Nations agency, said: "Some hacker groups are claiming responsibility. Further technical measures have been put in place today to ensure the online system continues to function."

About 2,000 delegates from more than 160 countries are at the conference, which aims to renegotiate regulations drawn up in 1988.

Google, the European Parliament and internet activists are opposed to the meeting as they do not believe the ITU should regulate the internet. Its decisions are due to be announced next Friday.

csimpson@thenational.ae