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UPDATE5 Sky Broadband and BT ISP Customers Hit by Email Problems

Thursday, November 20th, 2014 (1:31 pm) - Score 12,755

Customers of Sky Broadband (BSkyB) and BT are currently experiencing problems with accessing their emails on the operators Yahoo! Mail powered platform, which appears to be preventing many users from successfully logging-in.

Officially Sky first recognised the problem at 9:20am today with a canned statement: “We’re aware of an issue with Sky Yahoo Mail which is causing problems if you’re trying to log in to your mailbox. We’re working closely with Yahoo to fix the problem and we’ll provide an update on our progress in the next hour. We’re sorry for any inconvenience caused.” A progress update posted roughly three hours later said, “Engineers are continuing to work towards a resolution“.

Some of Sky’s customers have noted, via the operators Community Forum, that their issues actually began early yesterday morning and have continued into today, while others say it started today. Customers who experience the somewhat sporadic issue typically find that their login attempts are rejected, often with a request to re-enter the password.

However the problem does not appear to manifest in exactly the same way for everybody. For example, Sky users that have setup their email via the Mail app on iPhone / iPad (iOS) devices may be able to access incomplete messages and emails will only download very slowly.

The good news is that some customers have found a temporary solution, although it might not work for everybody. Never the less a few subscribers were able to get into their emails by going directly to the Yahoo! UK email sign-in page and then entering their full email address and password, as opposed to using Sky’s own interface / system. But take note that Yahoo!’s servers may also be the source of this issue as they too have recently been having some difficulties.

Sky Broadband officially migrated from their old Google (Gmail) based email platform to a new Yahoo! webmail alternative (Sky Yahoo! Mail) last year, which caused more than a few problems and created some unhappy customers (here). In fairness, mass email platform migrations rarely go smoothly.

UPDATE 1:43pm

Interestingly BT’s older Yahoo! based email customers are also having problems. One of BT’s twitter agents said, “Sorry if you are unable to login, or send and receive email with BT Yahoo today. We’re aware and are working to fix asap.” More discussion can be found on BT’s community forum.

Readers might recall that BT have this year been busy migrating their old Yahoo! platform to the new Openwave Messaging (formerly Critical Path) based service, albeit with a few teething problems like Sky.

UPDATE 2:04pm

Upon closer inspect it looks like some of the reports began as early as Tuesday 18th November, which is when a similar issue struck Yahoo!’s own mail platform. But this was allegedly resolved on the same day, with the firm saying, “Access has been restored for most users. We’re continuing to work to resolve issues for all users. Thank you for your patience.” Clearly the problem has not been fully resolve and is now hitting users of Yahoo! based platforms in the United Kingdom.


The latest update from Sky states that “a temporary fix has been put in place but you may experience a longer than normal load time when trying to sign in.”

UPDATE 21st Nov 2014

Both BT and Sky customers are still suffering from problems. An update from Sky reveals why, “The problem has been caused by a cut in transatlantic fibre cables by a third party. Engineers are travelling to the site to fix the problem and will carry out repairs over the weekend. We don’t yet have confirmation on when a permanent fix will be in place but we’ll provide further updates as soon as we can.” It’s unclear why Sky and BT can’t divert around this fault.

UPDATE 25th Nov 2014

A status update issued by one of Sky’s community managers late last night reported that the problem has now been solved and we’ve seen a drop off in complaints, although some people still appear to be having some issues with slow email (this might just be due to the strain as the servers slowly catch up with a backlog of messages).

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By Mark Jackson
Mark is a professional technology writer, IT consultant and computer engineer from Dorset (England), he also founded ISPreview in 1999 and enjoys analysing the latest telecoms and broadband developments. Find me on Twitter, , Facebook and Linkedin.
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19 Responses
  1. sentup.custard says:

    “Clearly the problem has not been fully resolve and is now hitting users of Yahoo! based platforms in the United Kingdom.”

    Yes, I have an ancient Yahoo address that I use for some things instead of one of my own domain ones, just got back from shopping at about 2.45 and found it’s dead. Don’t know if it might work by going to their site instead of using my e-mail client – nothing important ever comes to it, so can’t be bothered to try that, it can wait.

    1. G Hop says:

      I have just had a problem accessing Yahoo mail on my Sky account and found that the Cookies setting on the computer had changed to “Do Not Allow Any Cookies”. I reset this to “allow from web sites I visit” and it is now working perfectly. Not sure how the Cookies setting had changed – possibly on a windows update?

  2. Darren says:

    On BT here and still not working properly, occasionally works but most of the time email is inaccessible.

    I was under the impression the migration to Openwave had taken place on my account because I had to update my POP settings after login stoped working to yahoo. Are they now going back to yahoo?

  3. richardlhavard@btinternet.com says:

    Why can’t BT tell its customers exactly what has happened. Now that I know they are dealing with an undersea cable I can also understand that the suggested time scale for repairs, given to me by the BT call centre will be much more than a “few hours”,”soon”, “48 hours” depending on who you happen to speak with in India!


    1. Karen says:

      I agree why don’t they just tell all there customers the problem then I would not of wasted 2 days backwards and forwards to my phone company and bt and trying everything myself to sort it out, very frustrating

  4. Annemarie says:

    I have been unable to receive or send emails using my iPhone since Tuesday, but strangely can receive and send them using my iPad! Sky have been unable to explain why. Feeling very flummoxed! I’m booked in to see someone in the Apple Store to rule out the phone causing this issue. Not impressed!!!

    1. Karen says:

      I can send but not receive on both my iPad and iPhone, what is so frustrating is when you ring them they get you to try this and that delete accounts etc and tell you it’s your device and all along its there problem I thought it was me going mad, to help with this issue I have moved my mail box that I normally connect to emails with and downloaded the bt yahoo email app and use this to access my emails until bt admit and resolve the problem! Why oh why don’t they announce on the news the problem at least I now know it’s not me gone nuts!,

  5. Tinlizzie says:

    I’m in the ssme sitution. The ipad email is ok. I am pretty certain that all my problems started after a windows Vista support update was applied. I’d like to know if others having problems are all on windows Vista

    1. Karen says:

      I thought that mine was since the iOS update but it’s to do with bt and a under sea cable ap

  6. Phil says:

    Since the problems last week I still cannot access my sky email account on my Android mobile phone but I now can on desktop and tablet. I have tried removing the sky email account on my mobile phone and adding it back but every time I get authentication error. There is obviously something wrong but as usual they won’t admit to it.

  7. Richard says:

    Email so slow as to be useless on ipad regardless of whether via App or using safari.
    This has been going on for far too long now !!!!!!!

    1. Karen says:

      I agree Richard but they don’t want to hold there hands up and say there is a problem probably in case the get sued !

  8. Haydn Bates says:

    I can’t access my Sky email inbox on my iPhone, but I’ve just sent a test email from my iPhone to the same email address and can access it on my laptop??
    Any news on what’s happening?

  9. Keith allan says:

    I can access my sky e mails on my laptop and phone,but not on my i pad 2. I have tried logging in on several occasions but this has made no difference ,,,,please help

  10. Stuart Young says:

    My personal Sky email is not working, and hasn’t been since Thursday last week, on my personal ipad (although I seem to be able to send some emails from this). However I am able to send and receive my personal Sky emails absolutely fine on my work ipad. Very confused as to the selectivity of devices working and not particularly impressed with the explanations being posted online! Please provide an update on when I can expect some true access from home for my Sky emails,

  11. Coco says:

    I have been having problems receiving Sky e mails on my i.pad for several days, the service has been intermittent but since Tuesday it will not update incoming e mails but can send. My ii phone seems to be working fine. It’s so frustrating, I have checked all my settings and they are correctt. I don’t want to delete the account and set it back up as I did this with a virgin account I had and it wouldn’t reload fully and hasn’t worked properly since, can’t send from it and only receive random e mails.
    Can anyone help?

  12. Stuart Young says:

    Forgot to mention that my wife’s email, also a Sky account, is working absolutely fine in the same ipad! Go figure…. Any advice welcome as this is beyond frustrating now!

  13. I had been given this original BT address and it was transferred when I moved to SKY for package benefits . This has worked great until end January 2015 when all my BT info was denied to me and all my contact is lost. I am 81 and not too PC competent and changes upset me. My email links to friends and family are the only pleasures I can someone help me. I am with SKY —JAMESRUSTY@SKY

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