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For more than 24 hours Intuit has been offline. Intuit is a financial services company that provides the products TurboTax, Quicken and the QuickBooks accounting program. According to the Wall Street Journal Intuit has ruled out a cyber attack, however, the duration of the outage would tend to indicate a security breach. It is quite possible that a proprietary hardware device failure could cause such a problem, but one would expect that a back up for such a critical piece of hardware would be stocked for immediate disaster recovery. Another plausible explanation would be that faults were found in routine backups and recoveries of older backups were not stored online or locally.
If the problem was due to a hacker (cyber attack) then it is quite understandable that the system would be offline for such a long period of time. It can take quite a while to investigate and determine the scope, impact, and depth of such attacks.
Without Intuit revealing the real cause of the outage it is impossible to say what the cause is, but a security breach is one the very few scenarios that would cause an outage of such a duration for a site like Intuit.
Director of Technical Education
Author ESET Research, ESET