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Optus Customers to Receive 200GB of Free Data as Compensation

Optus thanked customers for their patience and understanding. They will compensate customers with 200GB of extra data for the 14-hour outage that affected over 10 million Australians and disrupted emergency services and businesses on Nov. 9.

In a statement, Optus CEO Kelly Bayer Rosmarin said the free data package was a thank you to customers for their “patience” and “loyalty” following the nationwide outage.

“We really appreciate the patience and understanding our customers have shown,” Ms. Rosmarin said. She acknowledged customers were “let down” and emphasised the importance of keeping them connected in today’s modern world. She said the data would give them the freedom to “use the network and enjoy all of their streaming, surfing, and other services through the holiday period.”

Customers will have access to the additional data from Nov. 13 until the next few months.

The announcement followed Ms. Rosmarin’s formal apology, saying she was “very sorry” for the outage.

Optus engineers began investigating what triggered the failure. Communications Minister Michelle Rowland said the federal government would also investigate, and it follows the Senate establishing a parliamentary inquiry into how the telco giant communicated with its customers. Further, the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) has already begun investigating whether 000 calls on mobiles were affected during the outage. Optus said it welcomes investigations and intends to cooperate fully.

Despite investigations underway, experts have already concluded that the outage meant the telco giant needed more backup systems. Telecommunications expert Paul Budde said Optus should have multiple unconnected systems so one could back up the other in the event of a failure, reported by SBS news.

Multiple businesses took to social media to also express their frustration in response to the service shutdown. For instance, the MidCoast Council in regional New South Wales (NSW) faced challenges in processing payments and receiving calls during the morning.

Furthermore, the council said the outage was unexpected.

Meanwhile, the Berri Hotel in South Australia advised customers that EFTPOS wasn’t available and that they would need to use cash.

A bowling alley in Orange, NSW, was also impacted, and they notified their customers. “Optus down everywhere, affecting our EFTPOS and card transactions; please bring cash for today or until Optus get sorted out,” the bowling alley said.

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