A failure occurred on the communications system and host computer of China UnionPay last week. As a result of this failure, all the intra-bank transactions across most of China were stalled.

The outage occurred at around 10:56AM on April 20 and lasted until 7:00PM.

This was the first time that China UnionPay's system collapsed since it was established in 2002. The failure affected 18 member companies of China UnionPay in China, including those in Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Beijing, Shanghai, Nanjing, Tianjin, Fujian, Xiamen, Yunnan, Dalian and Qingdao.

People in these areas could not withdraw cash from ATMs, use POS machines for consumption or conduct online transactions.

After the system broke, China UnionPay says it made efforts to repair the system and it has issued an apology to the users. A representative said that the company is still investigating the cause of this failure.

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