Status update: bad news
A Square outage reminds us of the wide delta between tech and hospitality
What happens when technology meant to serve the hospitality business is… inhospitable?
For several hours last Thursday afternoon into Friday morning, payments and point of sale service Square went offline. Businesses (not just restaurants) using the platform reported trouble accessing key services like online ordering and payment processing. By all accounts (and there were many online accounts across social media), it looked extremely stressful.
On Monday, Square emailed its customers an update about the incident, later posted on its site. The outage was attributable to a DNS error. More specifically, according to TechCrunch, “DNS, or domain name system, is the global protocol that converts human-readable web addresses into IP addresses, which allow computers to find and load websites from all over the world.”
In other words, this was an internal problem, not an external attack. Square said there’s no sign that any personal data from customers or from merchants was compromised.
The outage made headlines across the country, as many small businesses suffered for hours with no service and, by some reports, little communication from the tech giant.
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