Residents of the United States received more than 168 thousand “phantom” SMS messages with a delay of 9 months. The reason was the server that could not cope with the load. This is stated in the report of the company Syniverse, which provides the delivery of SMS-messages in the United States.
Syniverse representatives did not disclose the exact number of messages that were delivered with a delay. However, after a deeper analysis, the company said that there were more than 168,149.
As William Hurley, Syniverse Product and Marketing Manager, explained, the bug was fixed and messages are now delivered without delay. The company apologized to everyone affected by the failure.
According to Syniverse, the cause of the problem was the shutdown of one server on Valentine’s Day. Because of this, hundreds of thousands of sent SMS “hung up” and did not reach the recipients. When the server was returned to the network on November 7, it immediately delivered all pending messages.
As noted at The Verge, in fact, the problem affected at least twice as many as 168 thousand people. Each “phantom” message had a sender and a recipient: the first did not know that the SMS did not reach, and the second that it was sent.
Reporters explained that carriers typically rely on companies like Syniverse to deliver text messages between networks. Because of this, the problem affected all major operators and even regional companies.
On the night of November 7, “phantom” SMS caused massive complaints from Americans. Early in the morning, tens of thousands of U.S. residents received messages sent in February 2019, including from former partners and dead friends.