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Nationwide Outage Blamed on Cisco Routers by Optus

Optus CEO faces tough Senate questioning over telco’s management of 14-hour nationwide outage

Optus CEO Kelly Bayer Rosmarin underwent intense questioning by senators concerning the telco’s handling of a recent 14-hour nationwide outage, which was caused by Cisco routers.

Ms. Rosmarin faced inquiries about Optus initially blaming Singtel’s software upgrade for the outage. However, she clarified that there was no dispute with Singtel. Singtel also confirmed that its routine upgrade was not responsible for the issue, stating that they had informed all affected customers beforehand.

Despite these clarifications, Greens Senator Sarah Hanson-Young criticized Optus’ public relations strategy as inadequate for a communications company. There were also complaints about the lack of public communication during the crisis. Ms. Rosmarin admitted that Optus could have done better in handling the communication regarding the network issue and implementing more effective communication strategies at the time.

In response, she acknowledged that the company’s communication handling had room for improvement and expressed gratitude for the dedication of Optus staff in rectifying the issue. To make amends, Optus compensated customers by offering an extra 200GB of data, and Ms. Rosmarin promised ongoing steps to rectify any shortcomings.

Despite these efforts to resolve the situation, there were still questions surrounding Ms. Rosemarin’s position at Optus. She was asked about the report in The Australian Financial Review that suggested she would resign as CEO. When pressed, she stated that she had no intention of resigning and that her focus was on her team and the customers.

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