Much of the traffic across the Atlantic was slowed to a snail's pace on Sunday when routing information became corrupted.
The network failure was caused by a router at an unidentified customer of UUnet's. The router fed erroneous navigational information into the system causing a knock-on effect that meant network devices were at odds with each other resulting in "intermittent instability". Given the volume of use, a bottleneck quickly caused the network to grind to a stand-still.
"It took several hours to identify the source of the problem," said a UUnet spokesman. "It may appear that we were the source of the problem," he continued, "but that's because it came through us." Three Internet services providers had previously claimed UUnet was the source of the failure.