The Amazon website crashed on Prime Day, threatening a $3.4 billion overhaul. This is how Amazon.com kicked off its big Prime Day sales promotion with technical glitches on its website and app(liance), threatening its 36-hour sales extravaganza.

Frustrated shoppers vent their discomfort on social media with screen shots, while Amazon hopes there is still time to salvage the sale if fixed quickly. Trouble on the site spiked just as the event began at 3 p.m. Eastern time, but declined significantly within a couple of hours.

Because customers are having difficulty shopping, the company’s stock to slid about $27 (1.5%) in extended trading in New York. Shoppers were expected to spend $3.4 billion on Amazon during the promotion, up more than 40% from last year’s Prime Day.

The issues weren’t limited to shopping. Thousands of people reported losing connections with their Alexa digital assistants via Echo voice-activated speakers and having trouble streaming Prime Video.

Amazon Web Services, the company’s cloud-computing division, reported global problems with its AWS Management Console, one of its tools. Thousands of big companies rely on AWS to run their websites.

People are shocked that Amazon was not prepared for the traffic spike, unless this is way beyond their wildest expectations.

About 80% of online sentiment about Prime Day led to anger or sadness. It wasn’t clear how widespread the problem was, and users were reporting different problems. Some people were seeing the “Dogs of Amazon” notification that the website wasn’t working, while others said they could add items to their shopping carts.

The problem is most likely a bug in a software update that should be fixed within hours, said Antony Edwards, chief technology officer at Eggplant, which monitors website performance.

Amazon rarely has trouble handling high traffic volumes and its security is unlikely to be breached by a hacker. Even Sears has managed to salvage Black Friday crashes with much smaller support teams.

However, Jeff Bezos, the Amazon.com Inc. founder’s net worth cracked $150 billion in New York on Monday, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index. That’s about $55 billion more than Microsoft Corp. co-founder Bill Gates, the world’s second-richest person.

Bloomberg.com / ABC Flash Point Cyber News 2018.

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