Australia disconnected from the world

Emre Çitak
Nov 8, 2023

On October 4, 2023, Optus, one of Australia's largest telecommunications providers, experienced a widespread network outage that affected millions of customers across the country.

The outage caused widespread disruption, affecting mobile phone calls, text messages, internet access, and even emergency services.

While we don't know what caused Optus outage, there are indications that it may be related to the same issue that brought Facebook down in 2021.

Optus Help Twitter/X account has shared this right after the outage:

What caused Optus outage?

The 2021 Facebook outage was caused by a configuration change that disrupted the Border Gateway Protocol (BGP), which is responsible for routing internet traffic between different networks. This disruption caused Facebook's servers to become unreachable, resulting in a global outage that lasted for several hours.

According to preliminary reports, the Optus outage may have also been caused by a BGP routing issue. This suggests that the two outages may have shared a common root cause.

However, it is important to note that Optus has not yet confirmed this link, and further investigation is needed to determine what caused Optus outage.

Optus compensation and eligibility

Optus has announced that it will compensate affected customers for the outage. The company has not yet released details of the compensation package, but it is expected to include credits on customers' bills.

Optus chief executive Kelly Bayer Rosmarin said the telco would look into the issue of compensation for millions of customers once services were restored.

Customers who are eligible for compensation include those who experienced the following during the outage:

  • Loss of mobile phone service
  • Loss of internet service
  • Inability to make or receive calls
  • Inability to send or receive text messages
  • Inability to access the internet
What caused Optus outage file your Optus compensation
It is still uncertain what caused Optus outage

To file an Optus compensation:

  1. Gather evidence: Before contacting Optus, gather evidence of the outage. This could include copies of mobile phone bills, screenshots of error messages, or notes recording the duration and extent of the outage
  2. Contact Optus customer service: Contact Optus customer service through their website, live chat, or phone call. Be prepared to provide your account details, including your name, phone number, and account number
  3. Explain the outage: Not depending on what caused Optus outage, clearly explain the extent of the outage you experienced. Mention the specific services affected, the duration of the outage, and any impact it had on your ability to communicate or access essential services
  4. Provide evidence: Share the evidence you gathered in step 1 with the customer service representative. This will help support your claim and ensure you receive the appropriate compensation
  5. Await compensation: The customer service representative will process your claim and inform you of the compensation you are eligible for. This may include bill credits, service plan extensions, or other forms of compensation

Read alsoEquifax data breach claims are extended.

While we still don't know what caused Optus outage exactly, there is one thing certain: telecommunications providers need to take steps to protect their networks from cyberattacks, such as BGP hijackings. Customers should also be aware of the potential for outages and take steps to prepare, such as having a backup plan for communication and internet access.

Featured image credit: Optus.


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  1. Roger Dodger said on November 9, 2023 at 11:54 am

    It happened on November 8, not October 7.

    There will be no need to “file” for compensation. Optus will automatically put a credit amount on everyone’s account that was affected.

  2. NAT32 said on November 9, 2023 at 6:43 am

    The title of this article is misleading. It was only Optus mobile communications that was affected. All other mobile and Internet access worked normally. Thus, Australia was not cut off from the world!

  3. John G. said on November 8, 2023 at 7:08 pm

    I don’t think they’ve realized it yet. Probably.

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