WBBM Newsradio/Jim Gudas

Target Registers Running Again After Nationwide Outage

June 15, 2019 - 1:56 pm

CHICAGO (WBBM NEWSRADIO) -- As if weekend Target trips aren't rough enough, headaches hit the mega-retailer and shoppers alike after cash registers crashed for hours Saturday, creating long lines and testing everyone's patience.

But the gloom lifted in the late afternoon after Target representatives said they fixed the internal problem. They assured shoppers that no data breach occurred and that the problem was not a security issue. No customer information was breached, Target said.

"Target’s registers are fully back online and guests are able to purchase their merchandise again in all stores. The temporary outage earlier today was the result of an internal technology issue that lasted for approximately two hours," Target representatives said in a statement. "We appreciate all of our store team members who worked quickly to assist guests and thank everyone involved for their patience."

Shoppers from California to Washington, D.C, took to social media by about 12:30 p.m. CST as lines came to standstill. Some also reported that their Target locations, including those in Tampa, Fla., and Madison, Wisc., had been offering popcorn, coffee, slushies and discounts to appease disgruntled customers.

Mike Mulhall was shopping at a Broadview when registers first shut down and said he waited in line for an hour before he gave up.

"One of the mangers was starting to say they were having problems with the computer system and they didn't have any information on it -- they were waiting for things to come up," he said. "Then what they started to tell us was it was an issue that was affecting all of their stores."

By 3 p.m., Target employees at the McKinley Park store said its registers were running again. Stores at State and Madison, Old Town, Lincoln Park, South Loop and Streeterville also reported no problems with their registers at the time.

Earlier in the day, Target acknowledged the problem through its AskTarget Twiter account: "We are aware of a systems issue in store and are working as quickly as possible to get this fixed. Thank you for your patience!"

Representatives later apologized in another tweet and said that teams were "troubleshooting now." 

"We will provide an update as soon as possible," Target wrote.

A similar outage struck Target in 2014. A computer glitch slowed checkout lanes at stores in at least five states. Target told the Washington Post at the time that there was no cyberattack.

Erika Hobbs and Jim Gudas contributed to the report.