Square Promises ‘Full Review’ After Widespread Outage


Square has said it will investigate and publish a full review of an outage that impacted merchants for about 19 hours late Thursday (Sept. 7) and early Friday.

The payments platform said in a Friday post on X that the outage began Thursday and it was aware of the challenges the situation presented to its customers.

“Since around noon PT [Pacific Time] on Thursday, sellers have been unable to access accounts or process payments due to a systems outage within Square,” the company said in the post.

It had said in a post on Thursday that it was “experiencing issues with multiple Square services.”

Square resolved the outage Friday morning, the company said in a post at the time.

“We can confirm that Square payments processing services have been restored,” the company said in the post. “Thank you for bearing with us as our teams got functionality back up and running.”

“Once the outage has been fully investigated, we plan to publish a full review of this issue and determine what steps we can take to prevent it from happening again,” it said shortly afterwards in a reply to that post.”

The widespread outage on Thursday and Friday left merchants across the United States unable to access their accounts or process credit card payments, The Wall Street Journal (WSJ) reported Friday. The disruption caused significant inconvenience for businesses that rely on Square for payment acceptance, with many reporting a loss of customers and revenue.

Coffee shops, food trucks and other small businesses reported losing business as they were forced to inform customers that they could only accept cash payments, according to the report. One merchant estimated he had lost around 30% of his usual weekday business.

The outage also affected businesses outside of the United States, with reports coming in from as far away as Australia, the report said. Square’s Cash App, which allows users to send money via smartphone, also experienced an outage on Thursday.

Shares of Block, which is Square’s corporate name, fell 5.6% in afternoon trading following the outage, per the report.

About three years earlier, in November 2020, Square was reportedly among several high-profile sites that were affected by an outage at Amazon Web Services when one of the subsystems of the massive web operations platform failed.