Microsoft Office products including Outlook knocked offline in Internet outage

Home / Microsoft Office products including Outlook knocked offline in Internet outage

Several Microsoft Office products and programs, including email client Outlook, were knocked offline for several hours Monday.



graphical user interface: FILE - A man wearing a mask looks at this phone outside the Microsoft office in Beijing, China in a Friday, Aug. 7, 2020 file photo. Microsoft is buying the company behind popular video games The Elder Scrolls, Doom and Fallout. The software giant said Monday, Sept. 21, 2020 that it is paying $7.5 billion for ZeniMax Media, the parent company of video game publisher Bethesda Softworks. (AP Photo/Ng Han Guan, File)


© Ng Han Guan
FILE – A man wearing a mask looks at this phone outside the Microsoft office in Beijing, China in a Friday, Aug. 7, 2020 file photo. Microsoft is buying the company behind popular video games The Elder Scrolls, Doom and Fallout. The software giant said Monday, Sept. 21, 2020 that it is paying $7.5 billion for ZeniMax Media, the parent company of video game publisher Bethesda Softworks. (AP Photo/Ng Han Guan, File)

The outage was first reported by Twitter users, most of whom complained that Outlook was not working. Data from downdetector.com indicated that Outlook and Microsoft’s wider range of Office products were affected.

Microsoft said Monday evening that it had identified the issue (an authentication error) and was attempting to rollback recent changes, but that the outage would continue for some time longer.

However, users who were logged in before the rollback occurred were not affected.

“Existing customer sessions are not impacted and any user who is logged in to an existing session would be able to continue their sessions,” Microsoft added in a status update on the Office 365 website.

The outage came at a bad time as many workers in the U.S. continue to work from home because of the coronavirus pandemic, which has caused huge surges in at-home internet use. In the earliest days of lockdown restrictions being put in place, many states’ unemployment services web portals crashed because of the dramatic increases in traffic and applications. Similar influxes of users have plagued school websites this fall as students continue to adapt to remote learning.

Experts believe the work-from-home trend will continue long after the coronavirus ends.

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