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Broadband subscribers in Sutton were left without internet services for 48 hours last month after thieves stole 1,500 metres of fibre-optic cable.

Virgin Media has confirmed that significant downtime was caused by the act of vandalism – one of a spate of cable thefts to have taken place around the country in recent months.

According to the Sutton Guardian, the perpetrators are likely to have sold the metal on as scrap, however will have struggled to get a good price.

The newspaper noted that it is the old copper broadband cables, rather than new fibre-optic material, which are valuable in the current market.

"We take this issue extremely seriously and we are working with the police to prevent future occurrences," said Virgin Media.

"We would encourage anyone with any information relating to this incident to contact the local police immediately or call the Virgin Media security line on freephone 0800 096 7800."

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