IT failure stops production at German car manufaturer Porsche

[German]An IT failure temporarily shut down the entire production of German car manufacturer Porsche on Tuesday (October 15, 2019). Here is some information on the topic.


The incident affected production in at Stuttgart-Zuffenhausen site as well as in site Leipzig, which was shutdown for a few hours on Tuesday, on October 15, 2019. I got the information about a Reuters message as well as from German magazine Spiegel Online and German television SWR.

Porsche car
(Source: Adrian Dorobantu, Pexels license, free use)

A faulty data storage causes servers to fail

On Tuesday midday, the first issues with the company’s central IT system were already becoming apparent. Early on Tuesday evening, the Porsche management informed all employees worldwide by e-mail about the IT malfunction. It was a fatal chain of events that led to the failure.

  • Due to a faulty data storage 211 servers had failed. Switching to a replacement server was probably not possible.
  • As a result, the SAP software running on these servers, which is used for production, spare parts storage and customer processes, could no longer be used.
  • In site Stuttgart-Zuffenhausen, the complete production was shutdown. About 7,000 employees produce 200 vehicles (Porsche 911 and 718 as well as the Elektro-Taycan) there every day.
  • Also the production of the Panamera and the Macan care in Porsche site Leipzig was also disrupted.

Production could only be resumed step by step on Tuesday evening. This was reported by Spiegel Online with reference to a company spokesman. The spokesman denied an external attack or an infection with Ransomware. The reason for the malfunction was a faulty data storage as a starting point. It was a hardware problem that led to the server problems. Software that was supposed to stop the effects on other systems did not work. Now everything seems to work again – Porsche wants to make up for lost production.

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