The busiest shopping season of the year was chock full of glitches, aggravating harried shoppers and business owners alike. Did your X-mas gifts get diverted, delayed, or returned to sender due to a glitch?


Kroger Goes Cash-Only

December 24, 2019 | US

Holiday shoppers encountered chaos on the day before Christmas when Kroger – a grocery chain with more than 4,000 locations – suddenly stopped accepting credit cards. The store’s EBT system went down nationwide, forcing customers to run to the ATM and wait in long lines to finish their shopping.

Construction Accident Forces Virgin Media Offline

December 21, 2019 | UK

A third-party construction crew accidentally ripped thousands of fiber-optic cables out of the ground near New Malden, UK, resulting in an unusually long outage as engineers were forced to repair the delicate strands individually. Some customers reported that their internet had been down for as long as three days.

Major UK Banking Outage the Weekend Before X-mas

December 20, 2019 | UK

As if widespread internet outages weren’t enough, several major UK banks experienced glitches and outages in the weekend before Christmas. Customers at HSBC, NatWest, and RBS were unable to check their balances or conduct online banking, making last-minute shopping into a nightmare.

Nationwide Verizon Glitch Leaves Phones Silent

December 18, 2019 | US

Christmas is a time for calling your family, which is why a nationwide Verizon outage on December 18th represented some cruelly ironic timing. The glitch only affected long-distance cellular calls to landline phones, which means that while emergency services were thankfully unaffected, it was bad luck for young people trying to call their loved ones.

Double-Billing Error Leaves Vodafone Customers Out of Pocket

December 19, 2019 | Australia

Nobody wants to be broke during the week before Christmas, but that’s what happened to Australian customers when mobile giant Vodafone withdrew two month’s worth of payments from their accounts. Although customers had thought they were up to date on payments, a glitch in the Vodafone app meant that payments made in November looked like they went through, even if they weren’t completed. This resulted in an unpleasant December surprise.

Yankee Candle Outage Leaves Customers in the Dark

December 13, 2019 | US

A delightfully scented Yankee Candle makes the perfect holiday gift – if it arrives on time. Unfortunately, a systems issue in the company’s inventory department left them with a backlog of unprocessed orders, meaning that some customers had their candles delayed for weeks. What’s more, massive call volumes at the company’s contact center left customers on hold for hours, with many complaining about the wait times on Twitter.

WhatsApp Users Experience Worldwide Outage

December 11, 2019 | Global

With over 500 million users, WhatsApp is one of the premier communications applications on the planet. Unfortunately, a massive outage on December 11 meant that users in Europe, Mexico, and South America were unable to communicate with one another.

Not So Spirited Away: Glitch Falsely Delays Spirit Airlines Flights

December 4, 2019 | US

Delayed flights are a fact of life. Although they are annoying, they’re far better – in the grand scheme of things – than being late for a flight you’re scheduled on. Unfortunately, if you’re falsely notified of a delay, you get all the annoyance of a delayed flight, plus the much greater inconvenience of being late. This Catch-22 situation affected several Spirit Airlines customers just prior to the holiday travel season, with many of them taking to social media to complain.

Shopify Outage Punishes Small Businesses

December 3, 2019 | US

Shopify is a favorite eCommerce plugin for small businesses selling online, which is why a massive Shopify outage on December 3 sparked the ire of many. With Shopify customers unable to sell online at the beginning of the holiday season, many of them missed out on lucrative sales.

Diabetes Patients Miss Critical Alerts Due to Application Glitch

December 2, 2019 | US

Glitches often cause inconvenience, but they’re rarely life-threatening. Unfortunately, several diabetes patients had severe close calls when Dexcom, a company specializing in diabetes monitors, experienced an overnight outage. Patients who had relied on Dexcom for alerts about their low blood sugar were left in the dark, and several experienced dangerously low glucose levels.

Costco Loses Up to $11 Million Due to Website Outage

November 30, 2019 | US

Thanks to a 16-hour outage on Thanksgiving Day, Costco – the wholesale giant – lost approximately $11 million in sales leading up to Black Friday. This means that early shoppers, many of whom were trying to skip the in-person lines on Black Friday itself, were left unable to pay for their items. What’s more, physical Costco locations were closed on Thanksgiving Day, meaning there was nowhere customers could go to get help.


That’s our year in glitches! 2019 was a wild ride, filled with vast outages, immense price glitches, and other troubling problems. Proof that we’re all just one glitch away from a PR nightmare. Anomaly detection can alert you to incidents before they escalate. Try Anodot’s patented anomaly detection on your data – get a Taste of Anodot.  

Glitch List: December 2019


Written by Anodot

Anodot leads in Autonomous Business Monitoring, offering real-time incident detection and innovative cloud cost management solutions with a primary focus on partnerships and MSP collaboration. Our machine learning platform not only identifies business incidents promptly but also optimizes cloud resources, reducing waste. By reducing alert noise by up to 95 percent and slashing time to detection by as much as 80 percent, Anodot has helped customers recover millions in time and revenue.

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