‘Third party’ behind Optus network crash revealed

Optus compensation

The unnamed ‘third party’ that Optus said contributed to its national network outage has been revealed as its Singaporean parent company Singtel, according to a report.

Optus on Monday blamed a software upgrade for the crash that left millions without phone connections and internet services.

It referenced an “international peering network” which sent routing changes during the routine upgrade.

The Sydney Morning Herald named the Singtel Internet Exchange, known as STiX, as that third party on Wednesday, citing anonymous sources.

The exchange was sending routing information to the telco’s routers on the day of the outage that put Optus into meltdown, it reports.

An Optus engineer told the SMH Singtel was likely not publicly named in part because its board was visiting Sydney last week to meet Optus executives.

The time taken to restore the system was longer than anticipated because some of the routers needed to be physically rebooted, requiring Optus staff to be sent to sites across the country.

Singtel became Optus’s parent company in 2001. Singtel describes itself as Asia’s leading communications group, with more than 130 years of experience.

The 12-hour outage on Wednesday left 10 million individuals and businesses unable to make or receive calls or complete transactions.

The company said in a statement on Monday the cause was now known and steps had been taken to ensure it won’t happen again.

“At around 4.05am Wednesday morning, the Optus network received changes to routing information from an international peering network following a routine software upgrade,” the company said.

Optus says it has made changes to ensure it does not suffer another disastrous outage.

“These routing information changes propagated through multiple layers in our network and exceeded preset safety levels on key routers which could not handle these.

“This resulted in those routers disconnecting from the Optus IP Core network to protect themselves.

“The restoration of the network was at all times our priority and we subsequently established the cause working together with our partners,” the telco said.

“We have made changes to the network to address this issue so that it cannot occur again.”

Optus chief Kelly Bayer Rosmarin rejected claims last week the outage was caused by an upgrade.

Optus will co-operate with reviews launched by the government and the Senate.

-with AAP

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