Amazon typo hobbled large part of internet

Amazon typo hobbled large part of internet

Hundreds of thousands of websites were knocked offline or slowed yesterday due to what Amazon describes as an employee error.

Amazon's S3 cloud hosting service — and the many popular websites and apps run off the S3 platform — were hobbled Wednesday, leading to consternation across the internet. The site explained the outage in a Thursday statement as the result of an employee trying to fix a billing server that had slowed. 

"Unfortunately, one of the inputs to the command was entered incorrectly and a larger set of servers was removed than intended," said Amazon. 


The Amazon service is popular, by some estimates serving at least 40 percent of the public cloud services market. When it faltered, services like Slack and Venmo were knocked offline and websites that relied on S3 for hosting struggled to update.

"We can't add art. On my story about S3," tweeted Vocativ reporter Kevin Collier amid the outage. 

Amazon closed it's explanation with a mea culpa.  

"[W]e want to apologize for the impact this event caused for our customers. While we are proud of our long track record of availability with Amazon S3, we know how critical this service is to our customers, their applications and end users, and their businesses. We will do everything we can to learn from this event and use it to improve our availability even further," it wrote.