E-Commerce Firms, Financial Services Companies Biggest Losers in AWS Outage

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The four-hour long Amazon Web Services S3 outage on Tuesday reduced the performance of over half of the internet’s top 100 retailers by 20 percent or more, according to website testing and monitoring firm Apica.

Average page load times for the 54 sites among the top 100 which were affected increased from a few seconds to over 30 seconds, and millions of internet users were impacted, according to Apica.

Analytics firm Cyence estimates that S&P 500 companies lost approximately $150 million from the downtime, and U.S. financial services companies lost another $160 million, The Register reports.

See also: AWS Outage Shows Dangers of Single-Cloud Reliance

The Disney Store was slowed by a startling 1165 percent, while Target’s website performance was 991 percent slower. Nike was 642 percent slower during the S3 disruption in the US-EAST-1 region, Nordstrom was 592 percent slower, and Victoria Secret was 353 percent slower.

These sites were not the most severely impacted, however, as the sites for Express, Lululemon, and One King Lane all crashed during the incident. Apple, Walmart, Newegg, Best Buy, Costco, and Amazon/Zappos were not affected.

“Today’s internet is still distributed, but the data that live on the network are more centralized. Thanks to the economic advantages of cloud computing, a few providers control a large amount of capacity. As a result, a network that was designed to survive a nuclear attack is now susceptible to outages at a single company,” Elaine Ou, blockchain engineer at Global Financial Access wrote in an article on Bloomberg View. “Fortunately, the technology itself still works as originally intended — the Department of Defense has its own distributed communications networks separate from the civilian internet, so military operations can continue after an attack. The rest of us, by contrast, will have to live with the fact that our favorite services may occasionally cease to function all at once.”

Over 148,000 websites use S3 storage, according to SimilarTech. The other 13 S3 regions operated normally throughout the disruption.

While AWS is not the only major cloud provider to experience downtime in recent years, some competitors may have subtly jumped on the opportunity to woo customers away. On Tuesday evening, Google had sent out an email to analytics’ customers offering a $300 credit to join Google Cloud Platform.

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