Optus cites ‘network event that triggered cascading failure’ as reason for outage

Optus has cited a “network event” as the reason for Wednesday’s nationwide outage.

At around 4am on Wednesday, 10 million customers were left unable to make calls or access internet; an issue that lasted until around 6pm that night.

Since the outage, the federal government announced it will launch an investigation into the matter.

“In common with major global telecommunication networks, the Optus network is designed with multiple layers of fall back and redundancy. At the heart of this is a modern intelligent router network developed with the world’s leading vendors,” a new statement from Optus given to Mumbrella reads.

“Despite this, a network event yesterday triggered a cascading failure which resulted in the shutdown of services to our customers.

“Our engineers are investigating thoroughly and we will learn from this outage and continue to improve. We welcome, and intend to cooperate fully with, the Government investigations.”

In a separate statement, CEO, Kelly Bayer Rosmarin said the telco was “deeply sorry” for the outage.

“We know how important connectivity is to all our customers, and that we let you down,” Rosmarin said.

“We truly appreciate our customers’ patience and understanding as we worked to restore our operations yesterday.

“We know that there is nothing we can do to make up for yesterday and what customers want most is for our network to work all the time – which is our number one priority – but we also want to acknowledge their patience and loyalty by giving them additional data to help during the holidays, when so many people consume more data with friends and family.”

In an attempt to make good with customers, Rosmarin confirmed that Optus will offer customers 200GB of extra data from Monday 13 November which can be activated until the end of the year.

Eligible prepaid customers will also be able to access unlimited data on weekends until the end of the year.

The outage comes just over a year after Optus was forced to notify customers of a cyberattack and “the possible unauthorised access of current and former customers’ information”.

Following the attack, Optus put a stop on all marketing and spend, with Pathmatics and Sensor Tower managing director APAC, Tom Cui, telling Mumbrella, “Optus’ decision to pause its advertising spend on the day of the cyber attack comes as no surprise. With approximately ten million Aussies impacted by the data breach, any proactive marketing activity would’ve been deemed insensitive.”


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