A Telstra outage that caused havoc for shoppers and bank customers around the country has been blamed on an “unusually large volume of traffic” in NSW.
The nation’s big four banks and major supermarkets were among those caught out in the failure, which affected eftpos terminals and access to ATMs for several hours on Thursday afternoon.
“We are continuing to investigate the exact cause of this issue, but early investigations suggest it was caused by an unusually large volume of traffic across network links in NSW,” Telstra said on Friday.
Executive Director of the Australian Retailers’ Association, Russell Zimmerman, said affected retailers should speak with their banks about whether compensation is available.
“We’ve got to slow down and keep these outages to an absolute negligible amount,” Mr Zimmerman told The New Daily.
He said it was “very, very difficult for retailers to handle”, especially considering “people, unfortunately, don’t carry cash in this day and age”.
It took the telco giant hours to fix the problem.
Telstra apologised for the service interruption on Thursday afternoon, acknowledging “how frustrating this was” and assuring customers that it was working “as quickly as possible”, to fix the problem.
By Friday morning, all services had been fully restored, Telstra said.
Things going well at Town Hall Woolies pic.twitter.com/Q00rlXtOID
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During the outage, Commonwealth Bank had issues with merchant payment terminals, with some retailers unable to accept card payments.
“Services have returned to normal including our ATMs. We apologise and thank you for your patience today as we worked to restore services,” the CBA tweeted.
Australia Post, St George Bank, NAB, Westpac and ANZ were also affected.
“All Eftpos transactions, bill payments and banking services are back up and running. Thanks everyone for your patience and understanding,” the postal service tweeted.
Westpac tweeted on Thursday night that the majority of affected branches, ATMs and services were “back up and running”, before thanking customers for their patience.
Woolworths supermarkets were hit hard by the outage, although its stores continued to trade throughout.
“Telstra has advised us the network connection is back up and running,” a spokesperson said on Thursday night.
“We expect our systems to come back online and resume normal service through check-outs over the next hour.
Caltex service stations, Coles and Woolworths stores, Big W and liquor retailers BWS and Dan Murphy’s weren’t spared from the outage.
“Telstra has advised us the network connection is back up and running,” Woolworths said, offering an apology to customers for the delay.