Internet Outage Hits Major Retail, Financial, Travel, Olympic Websites Worldwide

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A widespread disruption caused severe outages for some of the world’s biggest websites on Thursday afternoon.

DownDetector.com showed a sharp and simultaneous spike in outage reports for prominent travel, retail, financial, and gaming websites globally. In most cases, the spike in outage reports appeared to start around 11:40 a.m. ET.

Even the Tokyo Olympics website and app were reported to be intermittently down, just hours before the Opening Ceremony.

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Some municipal governments reported disruptions to 911 services as well in places like Illinois and Virginia.

Akamai, which operates one of the world’s largest and most crucial content delivery networks, reported a problem with its service at about 12:10 p.m. ET. Many partners, including Britain’s National Health Service, specifically cited that disruption as a cause of the outage.

At 12:47 p.m. ET, Akamai tweeted that it had implemented a fix and that systems were returning to normal. The company later confirmed that the outage was not the result of a cyberattack.

“We have implemented a fix for this issue, and based on current observations, the service is resuming normal operations. We will continue to monitor to ensure that the impact has been fully mitigated.”

The outages did not appear to have any operating impact on the Tokyo Olympics, where competition was already underway ahead of the Opening Ceremony on Friday.

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