Issue With Data Centre Allegedly Disrupts Multiple Platforms, Has Since Been Resolved
On Saturday (14 Oct), Singaporeans spending their weekend on outings would’ve discovered that they couldn’t pay for stuff or withdraw cash from ATMs.
Even some who were relaxing at home might have found that social media platforms like Facebook and WhatsApp were down.
The disruption was reportedly caused by an issue with a data centre that’s being used by several organisations.
Citi says banking services temporarily unavailable
At 6.58pm on Saturday (14 Oct) evening, Citi Singapore said services on their mobile app and online banking platform were temporarily unavailable.
They apologised for the inconvenience, adding that they were working hard to resolve the issue quickly.
According to Downdetector, which tracks service disruptions, as many as 285 users reported problems by Citi’s services at 5.11pm.
The issue affected not just people in Singapore, but also in places like the Philippines, Hong Kong and India, according to netizens who left comments on the post.
Data centre issue also affects other banks
From about 3.40pm on Saturday (14 Oct), MS News received complaints from readers claiming that they were unable to access DBS’ digital services.
This included the PayLah! app, online banking site and even automated teller machines (ATMs).
According to Downdetector, 3,917 people had reported issues with DBS’ services at 4.06pm.
Over at United Overseas Bank (UOB), customers also reported on their Facebook page that they couldn’t make use of their app or Internet banking services.
Non-banking online platforms also affected
Besides banking services, outages to a host of other popular online platforms were reported, including social media like Facebook and Instagram.
Even video games like Call Of Duty were not spared.
At 5.31pm, Singtel acknowledged in a Facebook post that some customers were unable to access banking services and social media platforms.
However, they verified that their networks were working as normal.
Disruption caused by technical issue at data centre: DBS & MAS
Netizens, including over Reddit, speculated that an outage on several major providers pointed to an issue with a common vendor all of these companies use.
Indeed, in an update at 10.10pm, DBS said the disruption was caused by a data centre issue, naming the provider as American data centre operator Equinix.
DBS announced in November 2017 that it was partnering Equinix, according to The Straits Times (ST).
Equinix has since told ST that they were investigating a technical issue at one of its data centres.
This issue affected some customers, including DBS, they added.
They’ve expressed “sincere apologies” to their customers affected and have since resolved the issue, ST quoted Equinix as saying.
A Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) spokesperson told ST that it was informed of the outages by DBS and Citibank on Saturday afternoon.
The service disruptions were caused by “an issue at a common data centre that is used by the banks”, according to preliminary investigations, MAS said.
Equinix flags power issue on 14 Oct
Interestingly, Equinix’s service availability status page noted a power issue that affected Equinix Internet Access and Equinix Connect in Singapore.
Equinix identified the issue on Saturday (14 Oct), according to the status update.
It was marked as resolved at 1.05pm Coordinated Universal Time (UTC) — 9.05pm Singapore time.
However, it’s uncertain whether this power issue was related to the widespread outages on Saturday.
MS News has reached out to Equinix and will update this article when they get back to us.
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