The Effects Of The Amazon Web Services Outages

The Effects Of The Amazon Web Services Outages

There has been no major cloud computing outage in 2012. However, non-believers had a field day when Amazon Web Services customers experienced some service disruptions on June 14. Although AWS went offline for a few hours only, the downtime experience did have an impact on customers’ businesses. According to reports, a power outage struck Amazon’s Northern Virginia datacenter. Internet sites and startups such as Heroku, Quora, Pinterest, and Parse were affected. Heroku filed an incident report. As per Amazon’s Service Health Dashboard, the problem was reported before 9 p.m. Pacific Time. The power outage affected AWS Elastic Beanstalk, Amazon Relational Database Service, and Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud, which are all housed at its datacenter in North Virginia. The services were fully restored in a few hours.

The outage was clearly not IT-related, but Amazon did receive a lot of flak for the service disruption. A large number of comments have been posted online from people from all walks life, even from the company’s competitors and non-clients. In a nutshell, the lesson cloud computing services users must learn is that they must spread their workloads across various parts of Amazon Web Services in order to prevent being hugely affected if an individual AWS region experiences service disruption. In most cases, such service disruption is often blown out of proportion. Customers who are having doubts regarding the credibility of cloud computing service providers will likely stay out of the cloud and still prefer to buy more expensive IT products hosted on-premise.

In April 2011, the North Virginia datacenter suffered a similar service outage which affected GroupMe, Quora, Reddit, HootSuite, Twitter, and Foursquare. Amazon reported that the outage was a “re-mirroring storm”. At that time, only the relational database service and the Amazon EC2 at the North Virginia center were affected, but it did affect many customers’ services and websites. What is surprising is that even though AWS experienced some outages, the company is continuously growing. Amazon reported that its S3 storage has more than a trillion objects, which is 143 times the population of the world.

According to a recent report by the International Working Group on Cloud Computing Resiliency, a minimum of 10 hours are lost because of service disruptions yearly. The group found out that since 2007 a minimum of five hundred hours has been lost as reported by the thirteen biggest cloud computing service providers, which can be translated in economic terms to be worth a minimum of $70 million. In that same report, the group claims that a cloud computing service is usually down for an average of 7.5 hours each year, although an electric power service outage is pegged at a low 15 minutes yearly.

The group gathered the data from various sources such as Twitter, Amazon, Google, Paypal, Yahoo, Microsoft, Facebook, and others. It is estimated that the travel service provider Amadeus loses $89,000 per hour during any cloud computing outage, while Paypal loses around $225,000 per hour. There is no known data for the number of people affected by a cloud computing service outage.

By Florence de Borja

Sorry, comments are closed for this post.

7 Common Cloud Security Missteps

7 Common Cloud Security Missteps

Cloud Security Missteps Cloud computing remains shrouded in mystery for the average American. The most common sentiment is, “It’s not secure.” Few realize how many cloud applications they access every day: Facebook, Gmail, Uber, Evernote, Venmo, and the list goes on and on… People flock to cloud services for convenient solutions to everyday tasks. They…

Cloud Services Providers – Learning To Keep The Lights On

Cloud Services Providers – Learning To Keep The Lights On

The True Meaning of Availability What is real availability? In our line of work, cloud service providers approach availability from the inside out. And in many cases, some never make it past their own front door given how challenging it is to keep the lights on at home let alone factors that are out of…

Ending The Great Enterprise Disconnect

Ending The Great Enterprise Disconnect

Five Requirements for Supporting a Connected Workforce It used to be that enterprises dictated how workers spent their day: stuck in a cubicle, tied to an enterprise-mandated computer, an enterprise-mandated desk phone with mysterious buttons, and perhaps an enterprise-mandated mobile phone if they traveled. All that is history. Today, a modern workforce is dictating how…

Cloud Security Risks: The Top 8 According To ENISA

Cloud Security Risks: The Top 8 According To ENISA

Cloud Security Risks Does cloud security risks ever bother you? It would be weird if it didn’t. Cloud computing has a lot of benefits, but also a lot of risks if done in the wrong way. So what are the most important risks? The European Network Information Security Agency did extensive research on that, and…

Data Breaches: Incident Response Planning – Part 1

Data Breaches: Incident Response Planning – Part 1

Incident Response Planning – Part 1 The topic of cybersecurity has become part of the boardroom agendas in the last couple of years, and not surprisingly — these days, it’s almost impossible to read news headlines without noticing yet another story about a data breach. As cybersecurity shifts from being a strictly IT issue to…

Are Cloud Solutions Secure Enough Out-of-the-box?

Are Cloud Solutions Secure Enough Out-of-the-box?

Out-of-the-box Cloud Solutions Although people may argue that data is not safe in the Cloud because using cloud infrastructure requires trusting another party to look after mission critical data, cloud services actually are more secure than legacy systems. In fact, a recent study on the state of cloud security in the enterprise market revealed that…

Cloud Native Trends Picking Up – Legacy Security Losing Ground

Cloud Native Trends Picking Up – Legacy Security Losing Ground

Cloud Native Trends Once upon a time, only a select few companies like Google and Salesforce possessed the knowledge and expertise to operate efficient cloud infrastructure and applications. Organizations patronizing those companies benefitted with apps that offered new benefits in flexibility, scalability and cost effectiveness. These days, the sharp division between cloud and on-premises infrastructure…

The Cancer Moonshot: Collaboration Is Key

The Cancer Moonshot: Collaboration Is Key

Cancer Moonshot In his final State of the Union address in January 2016, President Obama announced a new American “moonshot” effort: finding a cure for cancer. The term “moonshot” comes from one of America’s greatest achievements, the moon landing. If the scientific community can achieve that kind of feat, then surely it can rally around…

Protecting Devices From Data Breach: Identity of Things (IDoT)

Protecting Devices From Data Breach: Identity of Things (IDoT)

How to Identify and Authenticate in the Expanding IoT Ecosystem It is a necessity to protect IoT devices and their associated data. As the IoT ecosystem continues to expand, the need to create an identity to newly-connected things is becoming increasingly crucial. These ‘things’ can include anything from basic sensors and gateways to industrial controls…