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This article was published on August 21, 2008

Why Is Paypal Always Down These Days?

Why Is Paypal Always Down These Days?
Steven Carrol
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Steven Carrol

Steven is a web applications developer, living in south of France, originally from London. His current project is Myplaylist.biz. In the nin Steven is a web applications developer, living in south of France, originally from London. His current project is Myplaylist.biz. In the nineties, he was a designer / director of a highly successful design, manufacturing and distribution company (Intimidation).


Being a web developer and system admin for my own network, I have more sympathy than most when it comes to problems with scaling and general system admin. But this is Paypal I’m talking about and being the ‘premier’ service provider of online payments it is simply unforgivable.

I’m actually generally very fond of Paypal, since my last rant about their ineptness they actually contacted me and followed up with some useful tips on resolving some idiosyncrasy’s with their system. As I had long since given up with their standard customer service (which is generally considered to be non existent) it was a welcome interjection of support.

They have even implemented at least one of my suggestions that I made which would IMO improve their system (glade to hear their listening) and it was a great improvement. Alas, as of the last 4 weeks (at least) paypal has been suffering with consistent rounds of intermittent downtime (in Europe only I’m told). I have emailed my contacts (some higher ups in France) who have explained they have been having some issues with ‘cookies’ and some localized issues that were thought to have been resolved.

Well I can assure you Paypal they have not been resolved. I have spent most of the day (trying) to test a shopping cart function for a new application and Paypal has been intermittently down for much of today (very annoying). Even more worryingly for the last month every time I have checked the site for one reason or another I have had issues ranging from some features not working to complete downtime.

But for companies trading using Paypal as their sole method of payment these ongoing troubles are tantamount to denial of service attacks. The effort companies go to actually get a customer to the checkout is huge and extremely costly, to have the checkout girl throw a wobble at the last minute and tell the customer to **** off could rightly be called a sackable offense!