Julie McNelley, a fraud analyst at Aite, says the timing of the outage is curious, coming only one day after BofA announced plans to begin charging fees associated with debit-card purchases. "It wouldn't be the first time a hacktivist group used a denial of service attack to express their displeasure over a company policy," McNelley says. But Burke says the bank's site troubles are not related to a hack or a breach, and that the site issues have been sporadic.
In November 2010, a similar outage struck BofA and several other institutions, including Chase, U.S. Bank and Wells Fargo. Given the number of institutions affected, industry pundits speculated that the November outage was linked to a third-party or core processor that manages online banking for various institutions.
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