South Korea’s Yoon calls for swift resumption of popular messaging, portal services

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South Korean President Yoon Suk-yeol on Sunday called for swift measures to resume all services offered by Kakao Corp and Naver Corp, a day after a fire at a data center damaged their servers and caused outages.

Service disruptions, some of which continued into Sunday, hit some of the country’s most-used apps and websites, including Kakao messenger and the company’s online payment, gaming and music streaming services.

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The outages highlighted how reliant South Korea is on Kakao messenger, which is the default form of communication for many government and business services.

“We ask that government ministries also make every effort to ensure that Kakao and others can responsibly and promptly restore services,” Yoon said, according to his spokeswoman.

Yoon ordered the science and ICT minister to provide personal support, and called for an investigation to identify the exact causes behind the incident.

He also said measures should be taken to prevent such an incident from happening again, including ensuring data was backed up and accidents were reported quickly.

Science and ICT Minister Lee Jong-ho visited the damaged data center in Pangyo, just south of Seoul, and said the government will look for systemic support measures in case of another failure of this kind, Yonhap news agency reported.

The companies involved apologized to customers for the service disruptions.

Kakao’s messenger app Kakao Talk has more than 47 million active users in South Korea and 53 million globally, the company said in a report in August.

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