Amazon has confirmed that a simple typo was the cause of several high-profile websites and services being knocked offline.

The latest typo error by Amazon caused hours of problems for services like Q&A forum Quora, Giphy, and many more. The sites rely on hosting provided by Amazon Web Services (AWS) – a cloud computing provider. The typo was made during a routine debugging of the AWS billing system.

“Unfortunately, one of the inputs to the command was entered incorrectly and a larger set of servers was removed than intended”, explained the company in an online statement. The error required a full restart that “took longer than expected”. It is reported that around 150,000 websites and services rely on AWS.

Among those affected by the failure was, ironically, Down Detector; an online service provider that tracks downtime at major websites.

Amazon, which is the world’s largest provider of cloud services, says it is now making changes to help prevent a similar incident occurring in the future.

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