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Airline and Airport Technology Failures


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Happening often enough now that it warrants a separate thread.

Computer glitch delays nearly 100 Alaska Airlines flights

23 hrs 58 mins ago by Chris Klint
19 hrs 57 mins ago

Alaska Airlines flight timetables on the West Coast are recovering Saturday afternoon from computer issues which delayed dozens of departures.

Bobbie Egan, a spokeswoman for the airline, said the problem was traced back to a router in Portland, which caused “connectivity issues” with the airline’s flight dispatch systems and delayed nearly 100 flights from 90 minutes to three hours.


“The issue occurred at 1 p.m. Seattle time and we got systems back up and running by 3:30 p.m. Seattle time,” Egan wrote in an email. “We’re working hard to get our customers on their way and apologize for the inconvenience this has caused.”

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Spirit Airlines website crashes


NEW YORK (Reuters) - Budget carrier Spirit Airlines Inc’s website crashed on Wednesday, leaving customers unable to book flights directly online.

Spirit wrote on Twitter that the outage was partial, but the website’s home page showed the site was “still up in the air,” with no links within the site available on the page.

“We experienced a partial outage at noon, but it quickly resolved itself. It appears another partial outage began around 12:40 pm and our IT team is working to resolve the issue now. This partial outage has no impact on flight operations,” Spirit spokesman Stephen Schuler said.

The carrier said on Twitter it was waiving boarding pass fees at the airport while passengers are unable to print tickets from the website.

Spirit’s pricing model keeps ticket prices low but charges fees for such services as boarding pass printing, luggage and other add-ons.

“@SpiritAirlines #trying to book a ticket.. website is down ... please hire some good engineers,” user @AjKumar28 wrote on Twitter.

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Cyber attacks on businesses are the new elephant in the room for corporate security. Canadian companies reported over 450 of them in 2017 and it's likely that there were at least double that number.

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If you catch some of the IT guys here on a slow day they will show you the firewall geographic IP filter running in real time. The Russians and Chinese are attacking us 24/7. Although they're not very good at picking targets, the server that is under constant attack has nothing they would conceivably want on it.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Air Canada experiencing computer problems, says Vancouver airport

Vancouver International Airport

A plane is seen on the runway of YVR international airport in Vancouver, B.C. Monday, May 6, 2013. (Jonathan Hayward/The Canadian Press)


CTVNews.ca Staff
Published Tuesday, February 27, 2018 11:58AM EST
Last Updated Tuesday, February 27, 2018 12:27PM EST

Air Canada is experiencing technical issues with its computer systems, according to a tweet from Vancouver International Airport.

The issue is impacting the airline nationwide, said Vancouver International Airport spokesperson Zoe Weber.

The issue is causing “some congestion in the terminal,” the airport said. Passengers in Vancouver are being advised to check with the airline for updates.

Weber said she expects the problem will be resolved quickly.

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Computer problems affect Air Canada check-in process

Airline says airport check-in problems have been fixed, but mobile is still affected

CBC NewsPosted: Feb 27, 2018 1:50 PM ET Last Updated: Feb 27, 2018 1:51 PM ET

Passengers wait at a check-in desk at Pierre Elliott Trudeau airport in Montreal. The airline has reportedly experienced a system-wide computer problem on Tuesday. (Graham Hughes/Canadian Press)

Air Canada experienced a computer outage on Tuesday that affected check-in and other processes across Canada, although some functionality seems to have been restored.

The airline was flooded with complaints by social media users complaining of problems logging into their accounts, including checking in at airports.

Problems started in the morning and stretched into the afternoon. On Twitter, Air Canada confirmed it was experiencing what it characterized as a "computer issue" that was affecting the entire system.

The check-in process at airports has now been resolved, but some users are still experiencing problems with mobile and web check-in processes, the airline said, without elaborating.

The company has so far not replied to multiple requests for comment by CBC News.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Air Canada technical issues causing massive delays, check-in problems

katie_dangerfield_220x260px.jpg?quality= By Katie Dangerfield National Online Journalist, Breaking News  Global News
-A A +

Air Canada customers across the world may be unable to fly, check-in or book a flight after a malfunction in the company’s system Monday.

On Twitter, the airline confirmed its experiencing an “interruption at our customer Contact Centres and aircanada.com.”

“We apologize for any inconvenience and are working towards restoring our service as quickly as possible. Thank you for your patience,” the tweet read.

According to Outage Report Canada, a website tracking online outages, Air Canada systems issues reports first began popping up Monday around 12:15 ET.

This is the second system outage for Air Canada in less than two weeks. From Vancouver to Toronto, airport across Canada are reporting huge lineup congestions as a result of the system oge.The airline’s technology teams are working to identify and repair the issue, and it is also implementing temporary measures to maintain a limited operation, Air Canada said in a statement.

“Today’s computer issues have had a wide impact on our customers and we apologize for any inconvenience,” Benjamin Smith, president, passenger airlines at Air Canada, said in the statement.

Complaints also flooded social media from customers experiencing delays or attempting to check-in and book flights.

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Air Canada says services restored after system outage causes flight delays

by Canadian Press and 660 NEWS Staff

Posted Mar 12, 2018 11:15 am MDT

Last Updated Mar 12, 2018 at 12:48 pm MDT

(Crystal Laderas - 660 NEWS)

Air Canada says it has restored its computer systems after a morning outage led to delays across the airline’s operations.The company says it expects some continued flight delays as it works to clear the backlog caused by a disruption of its airport systems, check-in and customer service centres.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Half of European flights delayed due to system failure

  • 1 hour ago
File photo from 2010 of the Eurocontrol system showing flight pathsImage copyright Getty Images Image caption An error with European air traffic co-ordination was set to affect up to half of Tuesday's 29,500 flights

The organisation responsible for co-ordinating European air traffic says it has fixed an earlier fault which led to widespread flight delays.

Eurocontrol earlier said that delays could affect up to half of all flights in Europe - about 15,000 trips.

It said the faulty system was restarted at 19:00 GMT, and normal operations had resumed.

Tuesday's fault was only the second failure in 20 years, Eurocontrol said - the last happened in 2001.

The unspecified problem was with the Enhanced Tactical Flow Management System, which helps to manage air traffic by comparing demand and capacity of different air traffic control sectors.

It manages up to 36,000 flights a day. Some 29,500 were scheduled on Tuesday when the fault occurred.

When the system failed, Eurocontrol's contingency plan for a failure in the system deliberately reduced the capacity of the entire European network by 10%. It also added what it calls "predetermined departure intervals" at major airports.

In a statement, the group said it "very much regrets the disruption that has been caused to passengers and airlines due to today's outage."

"We have never had anything like this before," a Eurocontrol spokesman told the AFP news agency.

But air traffic control itself was not directly affected, and Eurocontrol said "safety was not compromised at any time".

Earlier in the day, several European airports had warned passengers to expect delays, with Brussels Airport saying it was limited to just 10 departures every hour. Schiphol in Amsterdam, Helsinki, and Dublin airports also warned passengers about delays of varied lengths.

On Tuesday afternoon, Eurocontrol said its contingency plan would be in place for several hours, "until we are certain that sufficient data is in the system to allow it to operate completely correctly".

Eurocontrol announced the system restart later in the day, after what it called extensive testing.

It also asked airlines to resend any flight plans filed before 10:26 UTC, which it says were lost in the system failure.

Under EU law, passengers on delayed flights are usually entitled to compensation. But an exemption applies if the delay was caused by an "extraordinary circumstance" out of the airline's control.

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  • 1 month later...

WestJet says system outage partially resolved but some delays persist

WestJet Airlines Ltd. says it has partially resolved a computer system outage and has started to resume regular operations.

Airline advises passengers to arrive early at airports and check flight status

The Canadian Press · Posted: May 30, 2018 11:50 AM MT | Last Updated: 25 minutes ago
A computer system outage caused some delays Wednesday for passengers of the Calgary-based airline. (Darryl Dyck/Canadian Press)

WestJet Airlines Ltd. says it has partially resolved a computer system outage and has started to resume regular operations.

As of 1 p.m. MT Wednesday, the airline said some flights had been delayed and it was experiencing longer lines at check-in because of the issue.

WestJet recommended passengers arrive early at the airport and check their flight status ahead of time because of the problems.

Travellers had reported on Twitter that there were long lines and kiosks off-line at some airports, as well as issues with booking on the company's website.

Last October, the airline said computer problems caused delays for dozens of flights

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  • 3 weeks later...

American Airlines' regional carrier cancels more than 2,000 flights due to computer issue

  • Some 2,500 PSA Airlines flights have been canceled since Thursday.
  • PSA Airlines flies about 12 percent of American's 6,700 flights a day.
  • American Airlines is the world's largest airline.
Published 10 Hours Ago Updated 5 Hours Ago CNBC.com
show chapters

American Airlines has canceled about 2,500 flights since Thursday after a computer glitch disrupted crew scheduling at one of its regional carriers.


The airline has "stabilized" its computer system, which was operating too slowly to schedule crew members in time for flights, Cody said.

The problem is not affecting any of American's other regional carriers or its mainline operations, she added.

American's shares fell 2.2 percent to close at $41.51 on Tuesday, while the NYSE Arca Airline index fell just over 1 percent.


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  • 2 months later...

London-Gatwick IT Meltdown: Whiteboards Used For Flight Display Information

 Breaking News

London-Gatwick IT Meltdown: Whiteboards Used For Flight Display Information

London-Gatwick IT Meltdown: Whiteboards Used For Flight Display Information
August 20

LONDON – A massive IT outage from provider Vodafone shut down all flight information display boards in London-Gatwick Airport’s (LGW) North and South terminals.

Staff at LGW had to think quickly and revert to quite an old method—the Whiteboard.

Pictured below by Edmund von der Berg, staff members were seen updating the whiteboard with the statuses of all of the flights due to depart Gatwick.

imageproxy.php?img=&key=a0cae979cfbc8cbdPhoto: Edmund von der Berg

Gatwick Airport said, “We are sorry, but due to an IT issue our flight information is not displaying correctly. Please use the temporary flight boards in the departure lounges or listen for airline flight announcements. We are expecting to resolve the issue soon and apologize for the inconvenience.”

“Due to damage to a Vodafone fiber optic cable, we are continuing to display our flight info manually. Contingencies are working – we have whiteboards and friendly staff on hand to help, and tens of thousands of passengers have departed on time. Apologies for any inconvenience.”

A Vodafone spokesperson said, “We have identified a damaged fiber cable which is used by Gatwick Airport to display flight information. Our engineers are working hard to fix the cable as quickly as possible. This is a top priority for us and we are very sorry for any problems caused by this issue. We are keeping Gatwick Airport constantly informed of progress.”

The fact that some passengers have still managed to depart on time suggests that the contingencies did work.

Another complaint by fellow travelers was that the LGW Twitter account could have published photos of the flight boards to reduce overcrowding.


While this may be an inconvenience to travelers, their flights are still departing on time, which can be credited to the staff giving regular updates at the airport and pointing them in the right direction.

At the time of publishing this story, the problem has not yet been solved and the LGW staff continues to use the whiteboard as a primary form of flight information.

It is also unclear when they can expect the problem to be solved.

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Monday, 20 August 2018

Blank information screens at London Gatwick leaves passengers confused

A technical problem with fiber optic cables left the passenger information screens at London Gatwick airport blank for most of the day!
Members of staff at the UK's second busiest international airport had to resort to using felt-tipped marker pens and whiteboards to update passengers on boarding gates and departure times. The TV screens stopped working early this morning with teams of Vodaphone engineers, the airports IT providers, working furiously to rectify the situation.
Staff at the airport had to listen to radio communications to continuously update the whiteboards with gate information, so passengers knew where to go.  An airport spokesperson apologised to customers for the inconvenience and said the airport's "manual contingency plan", which included having extra staff on hand to help direct passengers, had worked reasonably well. Although it is believed that a small number of passengers had missed their flights due to the problems, but, no flights were cancelled. 
gatwick-airport-aerial-image-showing-north-terminal-airfield-1-twitter.jpgThe fault was rectified at around 5pm this evening and all screens were back online and normal operations were resumed. Many passengers used social media to criticise the airport, whilst others remained positive saying a lot of people were "scurrying around with markers and erasers" and it was "surprisingly calm and ordered".
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  • 3 weeks later...
British Airways Data Breach Affects 380,000 People
September 07
LONDON – British Airways, the UK flag carrier announced on the 6th of September 2018, that a massive data breach occurred on its website and mobile app.

It has affected 380,000 people, with personal anding banking information accessed by a third party.

The data breaches occurred between the 21st of August and 5th of September 2018.

READ MORE: British Airways Unveils Bold Expansion for London City

British Airways has given very little detail about the data breach, other than its notified its customers and spoke to the relevant authorities.

They issued a short worded apology tweet, linking customers to their website to find out more information. Alex Cruz, the CEO of British Airways also offered a basic apology to customers saying.

“We are deeply sorry for the disruption that this criminal activity has caused. We take the protection of our customers’ data very seriously”, he added.

t the end of August, Air Canada reported a similar incident, with its mobile app, that affected 20,000 of its customers.

However the British Airways incident is on a much larger scale, and more data has been accessed without any permission. The Air Canada hack was simply customer addresses, name and phone information.

Banking information was not affected in their incident, compared to the British Airways one.

READ MORE: Loganair Partners Up With British Airways

This isn’t the first data breach to hit the flag carrier in 2018. An IT meltdown during the May half-term holiday, resulted in 75,000 passengers getting stranded, as 726 flights were canceled over a 3 day period.

No data went missing during this IT glitch the company said.

This data breach just shows how the mighty British Airways has crumbled over the past few years, they are no more than just another overpriced budget airline.

Their reputation is damaged massively and it does not set to improve anytime soon.

Hopefully, this data breach turns out to not as bad, as currently being reported. Details are scarce, so the breach could be a lot worse, than currently being reported.



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British Airways's boss has apologised for what he says was a sophisticated breach of the firm's security systems, and has promised compensation.

Alex Cruz told the BBC that hackers carried out a "sophisticated, malicious criminal attack" on its website.

The airline said personal and financial details of customers making or changing bookings had been compromised.

About 380,000 transactions were affected, but the stolen data did not include travel or passport details.

"We are 100% committed to compensate them, period," Mr Cruz told the BBC's Today programme.


"We are committed to working with any customer who may have been financially affected by this attack, and we will compensate them for any financial hardship that they may have suffered."

BA said the breach took place between 22:58 BST on 21 August and 21:45 BST on 5 September. Shares in BA parent group IAG were down by 3.44% in early afternoon London trade.


Mr Cruz also told the Today programme: "We're extremely sorry. I know that it is causing concern to some of our customers, particularly those customers that made transactions over BA.com and app.

"We discovered that something had happened but we didn't know what it was [on Wednesday evening]. So overnight, teams were trying to figure out the extent of the attack.


British Airways' chairman and CEO says affected customers will be 100% compensated

"The first thing was to find out if it was something serious and who it affected or not. The moment that actual customer data had been compromised, that's when we began immediate communication to our customers."

BA said all customers affected by the breach had been contacted on Thursday night. The breach only affects people who bought tickets during the timeframe provided by BA, and not on other occasions.

Mr Cruz added: "At the moment, our number one purpose is contacting those customers that made those transactions to make sure they contact their credit card bank providers so they can follow their instructions on how to manage that breach of data."

The airline has taken out adverts apologising for the breach in Friday's newspapers.

Presentational grey line

BA data breach: What do you need to do?

By Simon Read, business reporter

What data was stolen?

"It was name, email address, credit card information - that would be credit card number, expiration date and the three digit [CVV] code on the back of the credit card," said BA boss Mr Cruz.

BA insists it did not store the CVV numbers. This is prohibited under international standards set out by the PCI Security Standards Council.

Since BA said the attackers also managed to obtain CVV numbers, security researchers have speculated that the card details were intercepted, rather than harvested from a BA database.

How did hackers get in?

It isn't totally clear how hackers boarded BA's website and app - but cyber-security experts have some suggestions.

What could the hackers do with the data?

Once fraudsters have your personal information, they may be able to access your bank account, or open new accounts in your name, or use your details to make fraudulent purchases. They could also sell on your details to other crooks.

What do I need to do?

If you've been affected, you should change your online passwords. Then monitor your bank and credit card accounts keeping an eye out for any dodgy transactions. Also be very wary of any emails or calls asking for more information to help deal with the data breach: crooks often pose as police, banks or, in this instance they could pretend to be from BA.

Will my booking be affected?

BA says none of the bookings have been hit by the breach. It said it has contacted all those affected to alert them to the problem with their data, but booked flights should go ahead.

Will there be compensation for me?

If you suffer any financial loss or hardship, the airline has promised to compensate you.

Presentational grey line

'Terribly concerning'

Jorg Herrera, from Amersham in Buckinghamshire, received an email from BA last night having booked tickets with the airline last month.

"I have six cards linked to my BA account," he told the BBC. "I have no idea how much of my information has been stolen.

"I will have to go to each of my credit card providers, cancel the cards, and all the direct debits, etc, related to those cards. This will take a long time, something I have to do with no help from BA.

"This whole thing is terribly concerning and really annoying."

Data duty

BA could potentially face fines from the Information Commissioner's Office, which is looking into the breach.

Rachel Aldighieri, managing director of the Direct Marketing Association, said: "British Airways has a duty to ensure their customer data is always secure. They need to show that they have done everything possible to ensure such a breach won't happen again.

"The risks go far beyond the fines regulators can issue - albeit that these could be hefty under the new [EU data protection] GDPR regime."

Under GDPR, fines can be up to 4% of annual global revenue. BA's total revenue in the year to 31 December 2017 was £12.226bn, so that could be a potential maximum of £489m.

The National Crime Agency and National Cyber Security Centre also confirmed they were assessing the incident.

'Flesh wound'

This is not the first customer relations problem to affect the airline in recent times.

In July, BA apologised after IT issues caused dozens of flights in and out of Heathrow Airport to be cancelled.

The month before, more than 2,000 BA passengers had their tickets cancelled because the prices were too cheap.

And in May 2017, problems with BA's IT systems led to thousands of passengers having their plans disrupted, after all flights from Heathrow and Gatwick were cancelled.

"It does not indicate that the information systems are the most robust in the airline industry," Simon Calder, travel editor at the Independent, told the BBC.

However, he does not think BA will be affected in the long term by the breach.

"The airline has immense strength. Notably it's holding a majority of slots at Heathrow, and an enviable safety record, so while this is embarrassing and will potentially cost tens of millions of pounds to resolve, it's more like another flesh wound for BA, rather than anything serious."


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  • 1 month later...

Cathay Pacific data hack hits 9.4 million passengers

Cathay Pacific says the personal data of up to 9.4 million passengers have been accessed in the latest security breach to hit the aviation industry.

Passport numbers, email addresses and expired credit card details were among the data leaked.

Chief executive Rupert Hogg apologised and said there was "no evidence" the information had been misused.

It comes weeks after British Airways revealed a major data leak had hit its customers.

The Hong Kong carrier said a wide range of personal information was accessed including passport details, identity card numbers, travel history and email addresses.


No passwords were compromised.

"We are very sorry for any concern this data security event may cause our passengers," the airline's chief executive Rupert Hogg said in a statement.

He said there was "no evidence that any personal data has been misused" and that the airline was in the process of contacting affected passengers.

"We acted immediately to contain the event, commence a thorough investigation with the assistance of a leading cybersecurity firm, and to further strengthen our IT security measures," Mr Hogg said.

Last month, British Airways said hackers managed to breach its website and app, stealing data from many thousands of customers in the process.

Air Canada app has suffered a data breach in August, resulting in the suspected loss of thousands of its customers' personal details.

In April, Delta Airlines said credit card details of thousands of customers were exposed following a cyber attack on a vendor.

Shares of Cathay Pacific tumbled nearly 6% in Hong Kong trading on Thursday.


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