Intuit Finally Recovers From Maintenance Error Caused By Power Outage

On-line Services Down Since Tuesday Night

2 min read
Intuit Finally Recovers From Maintenance Error Caused By Power Outage

There are numerous news articles like this one in reporting that accounting and tax software company Intuit suffered a massive outage beginning Tuesday night at about 2200 EDST that took down its main web site along with those of Quicken, QuickBooks, TurboTax and Quickbase.

Many small businesses depend on Intuit's on-line accounting services, and according to the news reports, they are extremely angry over the outages. Some 300,000 customers use Intuit's on-line services, which generated about a third of the company's revenue of $1.61 billion, said.

As of 1332 EDST today, Intuit announced that all of its services were back on-line and fully operational.

The explanation given for the problem was described on Intuit's blog this way:

"Our preliminary investigation indicates the outage occurred during a routine maintenance procedure Tuesday night. An accidental power failure during that procedure affected both our primary and backup systems, taking a number of Intuit web sites and services offline. While power was quickly restored, we're working diligently to validate our systems and bring them back into full operation."

Intuit also apologized saying, "We apologize for disruptions we've caused and understand the importance of our services to our customers."

How many of its customers unconditionally accept Intuit's apology will be interesting to see. I don't doubt that many will demand that they be compensated for the losses they may have occurred.

Before the BP oil spill, most companies in similar circumstances would likely say to their customers, "Sorry about that, but accidents happen, and we aren't legally responsible for the negative consequences to you that may have resulted."  In this post-BP compensation fund era, I think more IT customers are going to demand they too be made whole for IT errors, accidents or not.

Again, it will be interesting to see whether Intuit feels that it needs to do more than provide a written apology to its customers.

The Conversation (0)

How Police Exploited the Capitol Riot’s Digital Records

Forensic technology is powerful, but is it worth the privacy trade-offs?

11 min read
 Illustration of the silhouette of a person with upraised arm holding a cellphone in front of the U.S. Capitol building. Superimposed on the head is a green matrix, which represents data points used for facial recognition
Gabriel Zimmer

The group of well-dressed young men who gathered on the outskirts of Baltimore on the night of 5 January 2021 hardly looked like extremists. But the next day, prosecutors allege, they would all breach the United States Capitol during the deadly insurrection. Several would loot and destroy media equipment, and one would assault a policeman.

No strangers to protest, the men, members of the America First movement, diligently donned masks to obscure their faces. None boasted of their exploits on social media, and none of their friends or family would come forward to denounce them. But on 5 January, they made one piping hot, family-size mistake: They shared a pizza.

Keep Reading ↓Show less