Optus’ mobile and fixed-line network has gone down for millions of customers and businesses across Australia due to a "core network problem".
The telecommunications provider said its engineers are currently investigating a network fault that is impacting Optus mobile and fixed customers and apologised for any “inconvenience caused”.
Speaking to ABC Sydney Mornings, communications minister Michelle Rowland said there was a "core network problem that is impacting both [Optus fixed line services, including broadband, [and] also their mobile services".
"Optus has said that they are doing everything they can at this stage to identify the faults and to rectify it," she told host Sarah MacDonald. "But I do appreciate that for your listeners and for consumers right around Australia, this is very frustrating at the moment, and there is a strong desire to have some timeframes about when this might be rectified."
Also speaking to MacDonald via What's App, Optus CEO Kelly Bayer Rosmarin said she didn't have more information to give when asked about the system outage.
"We have had issues since 4am," she said. "The team has tried a number of parts of restoration and so far we have not had the results that we have hoped for. And we're pursuing every avenue to get everybody back online as soon as possible."
According to the website DownDetector, users started reporting issues around 4 am on Wednesday 8 November. The website said that 63 per cent of outages reported were affecting mobiles, with users unable to make or receive calls and texts, while 21 per cent reported mobile internet services were also down.
Around 17 per cent of those affected reported landline issues. Optus subsidiaries Moose Mobile, Coles Mobile, Spintel, Southern Phone, Dodo and Amaysim have also been affected.
In a statement to ARN, an Optus spokesperson said: "We are aware of an outage impacting our customers. Our teams are working to restore services as soon as possible. We will provide an update as soon as we are able.
"Optus apologises sincerely to customers. We encourage any customers who need to contact emergency services to use a mobile line to call 000. Optus can confirm that triple zero ("000") calls will not work from an Optus landline (fixed line telephone). Mobile calls to 000 will work if another carrier is available."
Reports suggest the outage has affected customers from as far as Far North Queensland through to Melbourne, Sydney and Perth.
In Melbourne, train services are facing lengthy delays or cancellations due to the Optus outage.
Meanwhile, Commonwealth Bank has also warned customers may face issues in contacting or receiving messages from the bank, including NetCode messages.
"If you need to contact us, you can still message us through the CommBank app, but there may be delays," the bank said online.
"Our other services including ATMs, NetBank, CommBank app, CommBiz and merchant terminals are also still available. We apologise for the inconvenience."
Speaking on ABC Radio National, Minister Rowland said to there likely was "a deep network problem and one that is significant".
"But I do know, having reached out to Optus and sought some advice, there's limited information at this stage, but that Optus is trying to get to the bottom of it," she said. "I think what's important here is that consumers be kept updated about progress, what is happening when there can be some expectation of restoration. I think it's been a very anxious morning for many Australians so far."
The outage comes a year after Optus was hit by a major data breach that saw more than 9 million customers’ details exposed.