Ride the Lightning

Cybersecurity and Future of Law Practice Blog
by Sharon D. Nelson Esq., President of Sensei Enterprises, Inc.

Extraordinary Heat Causes a Google Data Center Outage

July 26, 2022

So, you think your data is safe (and always accessible) in the cloud? Maybe not. Let’s face it, global warming has gone off the charts this year. In many places, the heat index is somewhere between OMG and WTF.

So it was no surprise when Silicon reported on July 20 that the outage of a Google Data Center (or Centre for the British purists) was blamed on a cooling failure.

Google suffered an outage at a data center in London, on what has officially become the hottest day ever in the United Kingdom – the temperature reached nearly 105 degrees. The heat caused fires across London and elsewhere.  Hard to believe but the heat caused train tracks to buckle – and roads and airport runways melted.

Google Cloud confirmed the outage on its status page and blamed the issue on a “cooling relation failure” in one of its buildings. The outage lasted for four hours – not so bad but perhaps a harbinger of things to come.

The outage impacted services such as Google Cloud, Persistent Disk, and Autoscaling.

The record temperatures in the UK also knocked multiple Oracle Cloud Infrastructure resources offline.

Oracle said, “two cooler units in the data centre experienced a failure when they were required to operate above their design limits.”

One wonders about the design limits of cooler units in the U.S. Are we next? Given the weather forecast for the next few weeks, it wouldn’t surprise anyone.

Sharon D. Nelson, Esq., PresidentSensei Enterprises, Inc.
3975 University Drive, Suite 225Fairfax, VA 22030
Email:   Phone: 703-359-0700
Digital Forensics/Cybersecurity/Information Technology