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Mastercard goes TITSUP in US, UK: There are some things money can't buy – like uptime

Total Inability to Support Usual Purchases

Updated Register readers, and quite a few other people, have been left with dead credit cards after Mastercard's payment system took a dive on Thursday.

"Mastercard went down this evening," one Reg reader, based in Britain, told us privately. "Couldn’t pay for petrol. It’s a disgrace you can’t trust cards to pay when you need them to work. Doesn’t say much for the resilience of digital payments."

According to DownDetector, the outage started at 1742 UTC and appear worst in the UK and certain parts of the US. Glitches have been reported in mainland Europe and Canada, too. Mastercard customers have been protesting loudly on Twitter that their pieces of plastic are certainly not fantastic.

The outage aren't just limited to Mastercard's own cards, but also to some Target Redcards that use the credit card company's backend. The problems appear to be easing off, however, and, while the payment giant hasn’t responded to requests for more information, its Twitter feed suggested the cockup is now sorted.

This is the second great credit card snafu of the summer. Last month, Visa suffered a major outage in Europe at a particularly unfortunate time. Millions of Friday night payments were unable to be completed, and settling the bar tab after the traditional Friday night booze up proved problematic.

We'll update this story as more details come in. ®

Updated to add

"A scheduled system update caused Mastercard transactions to be declined for a brief period of time earlier today," Mastercard told The Reg. "The situation has been resolved and all systems are working as normal."

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