An untold number of customers who use Cox Communications email addresses were not able to receive incoming email messages throughout the weekend, a Cox Communications spokeswoman confirmed to Patch on Monday.
Service was restored on Monday morning, but many customers have yet to received countless lost messages sent since Friday evening. The outage affected all Cox customers with cox.net email addresses on the East Coast and the Midwest.
Emma Inman, a spokeswoman for the company, said it may take several days to deliver all the emails, which were stored in a queue in the company's server.
"I don’t know specifically what happened, but something happened that prevented the email from being disseminated to our customers," Inman said. "We’re replacing some of our email storage platform equipment and putting measures in place to ensure it won’t happen again."
For Oakton resident Robert F. Dorr, that explanation is too little, too late. He currently subscribes to Cox's Internet, cable and telephone service package, but said he plans to switch providers after this weekend's email service disruption.
"I work all day, every day, seven days a week. That’s how I noticed there was a problem with my service," said Dorr, a writer. "I did indeed try to call Cox. It’s a little bit like trying to have a conversation with a fire hydrant. There is no possible way to reach an actual human being at Cox. I don’t think there are any."
Inman explained the company's call center was overwhelmed with calls this weekend. She would not disclose how many customers were affected by the outage.
"Generally for competitive purposes, we don’t expose Cox subscriber numbers," she said.
She said Cox does not plan to offer financial compensation for the lost service to all email customers, but will work with customers on an individual basis who request a credit on their monthly bill.
"We are focused on ensuring that service has been restored and that the emails in the queue actually reach the customers," Inman said.
Offering individual customer credits "is not our primary focus right now," she said.
Inman suggested customers could contact Cox via social media, the Cox Communications website, or by calling the company's call center, 703-378-8422.