Almost all card stations in Norway were down on Monday afternoon. It should now be possible to shop as usual in most stores.
It was around 12pm as major problems were reported at card terminals across the country.
At Vinmonopolet and grocery chains across the country, people stood in long lines as they tried to shop to celebrate National Day on Tuesday. Some Vinmonopol have not yet been able to get the stations running again.
The payment problem is due to an internal error in the Danske Nets system, one of the largest suppliers of bank terminals in this country.
The error was corrected at 13.40, says press officer Peter Glüsing at Nets to VG.
– What is the cause of the error?
– Glüsing says it’s an internal IT issue at Nets that we still can’t explain 100 percent, but we’re looking at.
– Can it be repeated?
– The Fortunately, operational disruptions in Nets rarely occur, but when we’re dealing with systems and people, it’s clear things happen and we’re apologetic, says Glüsing.
Tomorrow is Norwegian National Day. I know there are many Norwegians planning to shop today and that it has been boring for them, we apologize.
At 19.50, Glüsing repeated to VG that the Nets did not get to the bottom of the cause of the error, but that it was an internal error.
We do our best to resolve errors as they occur. We’re always looking at how to improve our procedures, how that happened and how we can avoid it, he says.
queue at the pole
Many who had gone to Vinmonopolet shopping to celebrate the National Day had to go home empty-handed on Monday afternoon.
It appears to be something more centralized, as more drugstores and grocery chains are experiencing the same thing,” Vinmonopolet Press Officer Halvor Bing Lorentzen told VG.
Despite the fact that the issues will now be resolved, there are still some Vinmonopol having trouble with the terminals, he says after 2.30pm.
– The vast majority of them are in booting mode, some are rebooting systems. There are some who are still struggling, he adds.
Norway’s largest bank, DNB, has also reported that they are aware of the problem, but they are not at fault.
I’ve worked here in the industry for 15 years and this is the first time I’ve tried something similar, said Pål Andre Fredriksen, CEO of Verifone, which provides payment solutions to VG when the first reports of the payment issue began streaming.
This is clearly a surely wrong day, Fredricksen said then, and referred to the celebration of May 17th on Tuesday.
– We’re talking about maybe 120,000 to 130,000 terminals. Then we talk about practically all stations throughout Norway.
While VG was on the line, Fredricksen’s phone rang hot.
– Now I got confirmation that all stations have been affected, he says, adding that Norway’s infrastructure is good compared to many other countries.
He can’t say for sure what caused the problem because it was with Nets, but he denied it was a hack.
– No, I’m sure it’s not. I would rule it out 100 percent.
– Do you have other doubts?
– No, nothing but it is boiling. That kind of thing happens sometimes, Frederiksen told VG.
Although the issue should have been resolved by Nets at 13.40, according to Fredricksen, it may take some time before the system is fully up and running again.
It’s part of our mission, we don’t have to be front page ads. But now you notice how dependent people are on the payment system. This really means that everything is working very well.
Half an hour in line
Many of them reported long lines at grocery stores, and that it was only possible to pay in cash.
Sarah Zamri was to buy lunch at the Rema 1000 store in Bjørndal in Oslo when the error occurred.
– I stood in line for half an hour, I told VG.
Without cash, you did not get the goods from the store, neither Vipps nor bank cards work.
“I had to register my merchandise,” she said, “and I will be called again when it works.”
At Kiwi, which has implemented a standby payment solution, commerce has been going as usual, albeit somewhat slower, according to communications director Kristin Akvaj Arvin.
– It should flow well, she told VG.
– This is a big shopping day. We prefer not having a queue at checkout at all, but I haven’t received any feedback that there is a mess in the stores.
– Too cruel today
BankAxept, Norway’s national card payment system, has received several reports of problems.
It’s totally tough on this day,” BankID BankAxept Communications Director Heig Stensland told VG earlier on Monday.
The day before the Grand National Day celebration, all cards linked to BankAxept had payment problems, according to Steinsland.
There are seven million cards in Norway.
Steinsland also mentioned that it is possible to shop in stores that have backup solutions.
– She said it was very wise to run this backup solution, and noted that about half of Norway’s stores had chosen to do so.
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