Microsoft, Google – now Amazon joins list of big-name outages

Amazon becomes the latest internet giant to suffer an embarrassing outage

Barry Collins
20 Aug 2013

Amazon joined the list of major internet companies suffering outages last night, with customers unable to access the retailer's website.

It follow a string of failures at high-profile sites, with Microsoft's suffering a prolonged outage last week, and all of Google's websites taking a short dip on Friday evening that saw overall internet traffic levels fall by an estimated 40%.

The Amazon outage reportedly lasted for around half an hour. Amazon is remaining predictably coy about the cause of the outage, although Amazon Web Services users also reported problems, indicating it was a widespread problem with the company's hosting infrastructure, rather than the retail site specifically. Netflix was also affected by the outage.

Google was equally tight-lipped about the blip that took all of its websites out on Friday evening. Although Google suffers from occasional lapses on individual sites and services, it's incredibly rare - if not unprecedented - for all of the company's services to go down at the same time. There's no evidence to suggest the Google and Amazon outages are related, although both are estimated to have cost the companies hundreds of thousands of dollars in lost revenue.

Microsoft was more candid about the problem that prevented many people from accessing their accounts last week. The company blamed a "failure in a caching service that interfaces with devices using Exchange ActiveSync", which it took a couple of days to fully resolve.

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