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Rail News: Norfolk Southern Railway

NS: Vendor's software defect led to tech outage


Norfolk Southern Railway announced Sept. 1 it had substantially completed a root-cause analysis into its Aug. 28 technology outage that impacted rail operations.

As of late last week, the Class I had found no indication that the outage was related to an unauthorized cybersecurity incident, NS officials said in a press release.

However, during routine maintenance of the railroad’s data storage system — which was performed by a contractor — a defect in the vendor’s software created an error that caused the NS primary and recovery data storage to become unresponsive, which in turn impacted the railroad’s core operational systems.

"We are working closely with the vendor to understand the steps they are taking to strengthen their systems to prevent this incident from reoccurring and identify opportunities for [us] to become more resilient," NS officials said.

Meanwhile, the railroad is working with customers and posting progress on the temporary backlog of trains that resulted from the incident, they added. NS expects a full recovery of network fluidity in the coming weeks.


Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

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