Shops hurt by out­age

Sunday Tasmanian - - News - PENNY MCLEOD and JEN­NIFER DUD­LEY-NI­CHOL­SON

TASMANIAN busi­nesses were forced to turn away some irate cus­tomers when EFTPOS and ATM trans­ac­tions failed due to a na­tion­wide Tel­stra out­age.

The trou­bled telco blamed an is­sue with a third party for the out­age, which af­fected thou­sands of Aus­tralians, from trav­ellers and shop­pers to small busi­nesses.

The out­age, which be­gan on Fri­day and was re­solved by 12.30pm yes­ter­day, pre­vented some EFTPOS and ATM trans­ac­tions, saw taxi drivers refuse travel to any­one un­able to pay with cash, busi­nesses turn away cus­tomers, and ho­tels al­low trav­ellers to check in with­out leav­ing de­posits.

Steve Per­rin, who man­ages A Bit Cu­ri­ous at Cen­tre­point in Ho­bart, said some of his cus­tomers re­acted an­grily when they were told they couldn’t pay us­ing EFTPOS.

“It was pretty bad yes­ter­day [Fri­day],” Mr Per­rin said.

“The EFTPOS ma­chine was out for the ma­jor­ity of the day. Some peo­ple walked out. We tried to ex­plain what had hap­pened, [but] not many peo­ple have cash on them these days and I can’t blame them for be­ing an­gry.”

He said they’d made only about “one third of our bud­get for the day”.

Shop as­sis­tant Sarah Baker, of Noni B at Cen­tre­point in Ho­bart, said the women’s cloth­ing store had like­wise suf­fered as a re­sult of the out­age. The shop’s EFTPOS ma­chine failed on Fri­day and was out un­til midyes­ter­day morn­ing.

“It’s been a big is­sue for us,” Ms Baker said. “We had peo­ple walk out. We’ve prob­a­bly lost about $1000 in sales.”

Na­tion­ally, the out­age re­sulted in many ATMs be­ing drained of cash, and drivers of in­ter­net-con­nected cars un­able to ac­cess ser­vices, in­clud­ing maps and mu­sic.

A spokesman for Tel­stra said the out­age af­fected its 3G ma­chine-to-ma­chine data ser­vices. “The is­sue in a ven­dor’s net­work re­sulted in in­ter­mit­tent au­then­ti­ca­tion of de­vices which pre­vented some of them con­nect­ing to the net­work,” he said.

The Tel­stra spokesman said af­fected cus­tomers would have to ap­ply for com­pen­sa­tion for the two-day out­age in­di­vid­u­ally.


LOST SALES: Su­san Baker at work at Noni-B in Cen­tre­point.

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