Update: The outages across NSW, Victoria and Tasmania have now been resolved, and investigation has revealed that the incident likely wasn’t caused by a cyber attack.
Unusual activity which appeared to be a cyber attack against Telstra has caused a mass internet outage across Sydney and Melbourne on Sunday morning. The company had initially blamed a Denial of Service attack (DoS), in which the company’s Domain Name Servers were maliciously overloaded to the point that people’s internet just stopped working.
In Sydney, this there were outages across the CBD and Inner West, while in Melbourne, areas including the CBD, Brunswick, Essendon and Blackburn were among the worst affected. According to the Sydney Morning Herald, people on other parts of the country also saw outages.
There was no initial time frame for a fix, and even Telstra’s own outage map was down for a little while. The good news is that things are already slowly coming back online, and no data was at risk or lost.
“Sorry to mess with your Sunday plans,” the company tweeted.
⚠️ Our team is looking into an issue impacting some home internet connections including nbn. We'll keep you posted as we get on top of it. Sorry to mess with your Sunday plans.
— Telstra (@Telstra) August 2, 2020
“We’ve identified the issue and are working on it,” a spokesperson said in a later tweet.
“Some of our Domain Name Servers (DNS) used to route your traffic online are experiencing a cyber attack, known as a Denial of Service (DoS).
“Your info isn’t at risk. We’re doing all we can to get you back online.”
However, a Telstra spokesperson later confirmed to P.TV that the incident likely wasn’t caused by a malicious cyber attack.
“The massive messaging storm that presented as a denial of service cyber attack has been investigated by our security teams and we now believe that it was not malicious, but a DNS issue,” the spokesperson said.
According to DownDetector, many customers were back online by midday, including the author of this very article.