Visa now says a massive network outage that affected Europe and the UK was caused by a “hardware failure.”
“The issue was the result of a hardware failure within one of our European systems and is not associated with any unauthorised access or cyberattack.
Our goal is to ensure all Visa payments work reliably 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. We fell well short of this goal today and we apologize to all of our partners and Visa account holders for any inconvenience this may have caused.”
The outage left people at gas stations, malls and supermarkets out of luck and searching for ATMs.
First time I’ve ever left without paying for my fuel ⛽️ #visa fail 🚘 good job my local garage knows me 😏
— Angela Rayner 🌈 (@AngelaRayner) June 1, 2018
— jamie #tacticalvote #fbpe (@donttakethepeas) June 1, 2018
The issues highlight the strengths of Bitcoin and blockchain, whose decentralized networks are designed to stay online without reliance on any one piece of hardware. Bitcoin has effectively remained online since its inception in 2009.
In a telling sign of what may come, credit card companies themselves are also looking into using the blockchain to power payments.
Visa long ago announced it’s exploring blockchain tech for international business-to-business payments. Mastercard has also filed many blockchain-based patents and just won a patent on systems that can use distributed ledgers to verify the authenticity of consumer coupons.