Major banks in Australia and US airlines were hit by hour-long online outages last Thursday, June 17. Among those affected were American, Delta, United, and Southwest Airlines. Other firms around the globe were also affected. The outages were reported to have started at around 2:17 p.m. Sydney time that caused large-scale problems in Australia due to its mid-afternoon timing. Banks in New Zealand and the Hong Kong Stock Exchange also reported problems in their online services. According to one of Australia and New Zealand Banking Group’s (ANZ) spokespersons, the trouble is “related to an external provider” but “connectivity was restored quickly and the most impacted services are back online.” The root cause of the incident has been traced to US-based tech provider Akamai.

An Akamai spokesperson responded with, “Our priority is restoring service as quickly as possible. We will share additional information as it becomes available.” The latest incident has drawn attention to vital online platforms’ stability. Hack-for-ransom attacks in various big companies—particularly in the US —since May have caused other businesses to fear cybersecurity risks. US President Joe Biden and Russian President Vladimir Putin discussed cybersecurity as their top agenda during their meeting in Geneva, Switzerland last June 16.