Friday, December 28, 2018

CenturyLink hit by widespread outage

Beginning on December 27 at around 10am MST CenturyLink was hit by a widespread outage impacting consumer and businesses across the United States. Numerous communities reported a loss of 911 service. Businesses reported a loss of mission-critical cloud services. Residential customers complained about the loss of broadband connectivity.

CenturyLink's network status page posted the following brief message: "We are investigating an incident affecting the CA1, CA2, IL1, NY1, UC1, VA1, VA2 and WA1 data centers." Status updates via the company's Twitter pointed to a faulty "network element" but did not elaborate.

On Friday evening, more than 24 hours after the outage began, CenturyLink reported via Twitter that all consumer services impacted by the event, including voice and 911, were restored as of December 28 at 7:30pm Mountain Standard Time.

FCC Chairman Ajit Pai described the outage as unacceptable and called for a formal investigation into the matter: "“When an emergency strikes, it’s critical that Americans are able to use 911 to reach those who can help.  The CenturyLink service outage is therefore completely unacceptable, and its breadth and duration are particularly troubling.  I’ve directed the Public Safety and Homeland Security Bureau to immediately launch an investigation into the cause and impact of this outage.  This inquiry will include an examination of the effect that CenturyLink’s outage appears to have had on other providers’ 911 services.  I have also spoken with CenturyLink to underscore the urgency of restoring service immediately.  We will continue to monitor this situation closely to ensure that consumers’ access to 911 is restored as quickly as possible.”


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