- By Annabelle Liang
- Business reporter
IMAGE SOURCE,GETTY IMAGES
Rogers is the mobile carrier for nearly 11 million people in Canada
Canadian mobile and internet giant Rogers says it will give credits to millions of its customers after a nationwide outage last week.
In a statement posted late on Tuesday, the firm said users will receive “the equivalent of five days service”.
The outage – which lasted for more than 15 hours – also affected transport, banking and emergency services.
Regulators have ordered the company to provide an account of “why” and “how” the disruption happened.
Rogers is one of Canada’s largest telecoms companies with more than 11m subscribers.
The firm said it has been “listening to our customers from across the country who have told us how significant the impacts of the outage were for them”.
It said in a tweet that it would credit customers with five days’ worth of service, instead of the two days it had previously offered.
“The national outage of telecom services that millions of Canadians experienced in the last few days is unacceptable. Full stop,” Canada’s industry minister Francois-Philippe Champagne said in a tweet on Monday.
He said he had gathered the leaders of major telecoms companies “to demand they take immediate action to improve the resiliency and reliability of our networks”.
The Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission, which regulates the sector, said it was seeking “a detailed account from Rogers as to ‘why’ and ‘how’ this happened, as well as what measures Rogers is putting in place to prevent future outages”.
“This widespread network outage not only disrupted Canadians and Canadian businesses across the country, it prevented access to services such as 911 and emergency/public alerting, as well as other critical infrastructure services,” it added in a statement on Tuesday.
The outage began at 04:30 local time (09:30 BST) last Friday and lasted for more than 15 hours. Most services have now been restored.
Chief executive Tony Staffieri said the outage followed “a maintenance update in our core network” which “caused some of our routers to malfunction”.
Some bank machines were offline during the blackout, while many emergency services phone numbers reported difficulties with incoming calls, and hospitals asked on-call staff to come into work until the issue was resolved.
During the outage people flocked to coffee shops and libraries with functioning Wi-Fi.
Three companies – Rogers, Bell Canada and Telus Corp – control 90% of the telecoms market in Canada.
Critics say the outage demonstrated a need for more competition in the country’s telecoms sector.