Redmond's on fire, your 365 is terrified: Microsoft email outage en masse

We don't know what's caused it, but it's probably a cyberwar with aliens living among us

Some unknowable terror has struck at the heart of the 21st century's communications infrastructure, as complaints mount regarding the global unavailability of Microsoft services, including email and authentication.

Has the cyberwar with the aliens begun? We're not sure. All we know at this early stage of the terrible and ultimate conflict which will undoubtedly soon leave us all ruefully regretting the bitterness with which we comfortably drank our morning coffees is that the first victim was potential leader of the resistance, Microsoft.

Complaints regarding Hotmail have been mounting on Twitter from France to Japan, while the heat signal on Down Detector shows Europe is burning as the cyber explosion sweeps all before it into pre-bronze age perfidy.

Official word on the cause of the devastation has not been forthcoming. Users have also complained about Microsoft online authentication, reporting that it "seems to be crashing out partway through when you enter the password".

Among the victims is our own Tim Anderson, although due to the lack of authentication services we understand he may have already been replaced by one of the new alien enemies now controlling what had hitherto been his slice of Microsoft's estate.

The outage follows hot on the heels of the great S3izure of 2017, in which an AWS region went offline because of an incorrectly entered command, at least according to reports, which we have no concrete evidence were not put out by aliens preparing for an intergalactic cyberwar.

A Microsoft spokesperson told The Register: "We are aware of reports that some users are having difficulty signing in to some services. We are investigating this issue." ®

Updated to add

Microsoft said it has "resolved" the problems that caused the outage.

Similar topics

Other stories you might like

  • Yet again, Cream Finance skimmed by crooks: $130m in crypto assets stolen

    Third time's the unlucky charm for loan outfit

    Decentralized finance biz Cream Finance became further decentralized on Wednesday with the theft of $130m worth of crypto assets from its Ethereum lending protocol.

    Cream ( and not reported the loss via Twitter, the third such incident for the loan platform this year.

    "Our Ethereum C.R.E.A.M. v1 lending markets were exploited and liquidity was removed on October 27, 1354 UTC," the Taiwan-based biz said. "The attacker removed a total of ~$130m USD worth of tokens from these markets, using this address. No other markets were impacted."

    Continue reading
  • OpenID-based security features added to GitHub Actions as usage doubles

    Single-use tokens and reusable workflows explained at Universe event

    GitHub Universe GitHub Actions have new security based on OpenID, along with the ability to create reusable workflows, while usage has nearly doubled year on year, according to presentations at the Universe event.

    The Actions service was previewed three years ago at Universe 2018, and made generally available a year later. It was a huge feature, building automation into the GitHub platform for the first time (though rival GitLab already offered DevOps automation).

    It require compute resources, called runners, which can be GitHub-hosted or self-hosted. Actions are commands that execute on runners. Jobs are a sequence of steps that can be Actions or shell commands. Workflows are a set of jobs which can run in parallel or sequentially, with dependencies. For example, that deployment cannot take place unless build and test is successful. Actions make it relatively easy to set up continuous integration or continuous delivery, particularly since they are cloud-hosted and even a free plan offers 2,000 automation minutes per month, and more than that for public repositories.

    Continue reading
  • REvil gang member identified living luxury lifestyle in Russia, says German media

    Die Zeit: He's got a Beemer, a Bitcoin watch and a swimming pool

    German news outlets claim to have identified a member of the infamous REvil ransomware gang – who reportedly lives the life of Riley off his ill-gotten gains.

    The gang member, nicknamed Nikolay K by Die Zeit newspaper and the Bayerische Rundfunk radio station, reportedly owns a €70,000 watch with a Bitcoin address engraved on its face and rents yachts for €1,300 a day whenever he goes on holiday.

    "He seems to prefer T-shirts from Gucci, luxurious BMW sportscars and large sunglasses," reported Die Zeit, which partly identified him through social media videos posted by his wife.

    Continue reading

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2021