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Service disrupted at Wells Fargo

Tue., Aug. 21, 2007

Service problems disabled ATMs and online accounts at Wells Fargo & Co. for at least 24 hours starting Sunday afternoon, leaving some customers of the nation’s fifth largest bank unable to get cash or use debit cards.

San Francisco-based Wells Fargo would not say how many customers or machines were affected but acknowledged that services were down throughout the company – from personal banking and Wells Fargo corporate Web sites and ATMs to the processing of mortgage and student loans.

“Customers may continue to experience transaction difficulties or delays in our stores, at ATMs and at the point-of-sale … and processing for some mortgage, home equity, student loans and remittances,” Wells Fargo spokeswoman Julia S. Tunis said. “Our systems teams are working to fix those problems and we hope to have all channels fully available soon.”

Although some customers noticed nothing wrong, others complained Monday at several of the bank’s 6,000 branches. Many customers could get cash only if they went into a branch and talked to a teller – but they had no way of getting cash after-hours at ATMs.

Frankfurt, Germany

Users update, crippling Skype

A two-day outage that left millions of Skype users unable to use the popular Internet phone service was caused by an abnormally high number of restarts after people had downloaded a Windows security update, the company said Monday.

The worldwide outage, which began on Thursday and ended on Saturday, left millions of Skype users unable to log on to make phone calls or send instant messages.

Luxembourg-based Skype Ltd., part of online auction giant eBay Inc., has more than 220 million users in total but typically has 5 million to 6 million users online at any given time.

In an update to users on Skype’s Heartbeat blog, employee Villu Arak said the disruption was not because of hackers or any other malicious activity.

Instead, he said that the disruption “was triggered by a massive restart of our users’ computers across the globe within a very short timeframe as they re-booted after receiving a routine set of patches through Windows Update,” Arak wrote.


Boeing lands big China order

China Southern Airlines Co. said Monday it plans to buy 55 Boeing 737 aircraft to meet growing demand and to renew its fleet.

The airline, China’s largest carrier by fleet size, said that it could not announce how much it was paying for the planes because of confidentiality requirements.

But it said Boeing Co. is charging the company “significantly lower” than the catalog price.

The order includes an undisclosed mix of 737-700 and 737-800 models. At catalog prices, 55 of those models are worth somewhere between about $3.1 billion and $4.3 billion.

The China Southern order was announced on the same day that a China Airlines Boeing 737-800 jet burst into a fireball after arriving in Okinawa from Taiwan. All 165 people aboard escaped .


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