An update on last week’s outage

Sep 11, 2023

We want to follow up with an update on last week’s Square outage. We understand that you rely on our systems to power your business and that’s a responsibility we take seriously. We apologise for letting you down and for the length of time it took for us to get our systems back up and running. We know this situation was made more difficult by our communication frequency and the delayed support response some of you experienced. Our systems have fully recovered and are operating normally.

We also want to provide more details about what happened. The outage impacted an important part of our infrastructure, known as a Domain Name System, or DNS. While making several standard changes to our internal network software, the combination of updates prevented our systems from properly communicating with each other, and ultimately caused the disruption. The issue also affected many of our internal tools for troubleshooting and support, making them temporarily unavailable. There is no evidence that this was a cybersecurity event or that any seller or buyer data was compromised by the outage.

We’re taking steps to help protect against these types of issues in the future and to provide better communication during any sort of disruption:

  • We have already made a number of updates to our systems. Specifically, we deployed a new set of firewall and DNS server changes that protect against the issue we saw. We also instituted additional operational measures to limit risk of future outages.
  • We are expanding offline payment capabilities. Offline Mode was utilised by many sellers during this recent disruption in order to continue accepting payments. Offline Mode will soon be available on all new Square hardware devices and most existing devices.
  • We will communicate faster across all channels. We plan to make updates to, to our email processes, and to our automated phone messages to make them more useful and reliable hubs of information about Square’s current status.

We also want to make sure we can get in touch with you during these types of events and that you have the latest resources to ensure your business can stay operational any time:

  • Please verify your email address on file, so we know where you want us to send communication. You can find out how to update your email address here.
  • Keep the website handy on your computer, mobile device, or in your business. This should be the first place you check to find out if there is an issue and to get real-time updates.
  • Activate Offline Mode on your devices. Offline Mode is currently available on Square Register and Square Terminal, using any Point of Sale software. For details on how to set it up, click here.

We appreciate your business and we are committed to doing better to regain your trust.

The Square Team