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Gmail’s outages last week were caused by “an atypical pattern of email traffic.”

According to Google’s incident report about the two outages:

Google runs a core message processing system that is responsible for delivering, monitoring, queuing, and receiving email messages. The root cause of both incidents was an atypical pattern of email traffic, resulting in high resource utilization in this system and delays in email delivery.

The company says it plans to “implement rate limit mechanisms in our systems” to improve things moving forward.

Incident affecting Gmail