Spanish flag carrier Iberia suffered a wave of delays and cancellations on Saturday morning after a major IT outage caused check-in and boarding systems to crash, the airline confirmed. A spokesperson was unable to provide an update on when the outage would be resolved.
The airline’s IT woes are concentrated at its main hub in Madrid but a spokesperson for the carrier said the issues were also impacting operations at other airports across Iberia’s network.
The cause of the outage remains unclear and the airline did not immediately respond to a request for comment. The possibility of a cyber attack has not yet been ruled out and Iberia has not yet addressed whether sensitive passenger data has been compromised.
In an update posted to its official Twitter account, Iberia said a “connectivity problem” meant flights were operating with an average delay of about one hour. The tweet continued: “A solution is being sought for all customers of the affected flights so that they can fly today.”
Iberia’s IT network is maintained by its parent company, the Madrid-based International Consolidated Airlines Group (IAG), which also owns British Airways, Aer Lingus and Spanish budget carrier Vueling.
Evidence of IAG’s woeful IT maintenance record has been concentrated at British Airways, which has experienced a series of highly embarrassing computer meltdowns over the last few years.
The last IAG-related IT crash was in late December 2022 when the link with a vital planning system at British Airways was disrupted, leading to the mass cancellation of overnight long-haul flights back to London Heathrow.
British Airways suffered several other meltdowns in 2022 as a result of IT issues and in 2018, the airline fell victim to a massive data breach that led to the personal details of more than 420,000 customers being leaked.
IAG recently warned that the threat of a potentially catastrophic ransomware attack on its IT infrastructure was on the rise following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
The airline group says it is “focused on minimising any unplanned outages or disruption to customers with additional resilience built into the airline’s networks.” IAG is currently replacing some of its antiquated IT systems but warned disruption could continue.
Mateusz Maszczynski honed his skills as an international flight attendant at the most prominent airline in the Middle East and has been flying throughout the COVID-19 pandemic for a well-known European airline. Matt is passionate about the aviation industry and has become an expert in passenger experience and human-centric stories. Always keeping an ear close to the ground, Matt's industry insights, analysis and news coverage is frequently relied upon by some of the biggest names in journalism.