Social services minister Stuart Robert has quite literally said “my bad” after he mistook yesterday’s surge of MyGov logins for a cyberattack.
On Monday, hundreds of thousands of Aussies lined up outside Centrelink offices or tried to logon to MyGov after finding themselves out of work due to the coronavirus pandemic.
When the website wasn’t working for most people, Robert blamed it on a distributed denial-of-service attack (DDoS), which proved to be very, very untrue. The large influx of users had simply triggered an alarm, with Roberts later conceding that there was no evidence of an attack.
“I probably should have waited for the investigation before jumping the gun,” he told Alan Jones on 2GB this morning.
“My bad not realising the sheer scale of the decision on Sunday night by national leaders that literally saw hundreds of thousands, maybe a million, people unemployed overnight.”
Robert said that last week, his department had increased the website’s capacity from 6,000 simultaneous users to 55,000 users. However, at least 98,000 people attempted to access the site simultaneously, causing it to be largely inaccessible.
So, can MyGov now handle the 100,000-odd users expected to be using the site at once? No, because Robert has only boosted capacity to around 70,000 concurrent users.
For those feeling fucked over by this monumental stuff-up, there is some good news.
People will be able to lodge their intent to claim later today and then submit their paperwork at a later, more convenient date. All claims will be backdated to today.
Still, having to jump through a tonne of bureaucratic hoops to be able to survive the coronavirus pandemic is not the best way to start the day.