The federal government’s online services portal myGov has crashed as thousands of Australians flocked to Centrelink in the wake of a coronavirus induced economic slowdown.
The problems started on Monday morning, with numerous users reporting that the site was unavailable.
The site was initially returning a server error with “Access Manager WebSEAL”, though that message has since disappeared.
“myGov is currently unavailable. We apologise for the inconvenience and appreciate your patience,” a notice on the site now reads.
Government services minister Stuart Robert said there was “unprecedented demand for the service” on Monday, asking Australians to be patient and to try again later.
There is unprecedented demand for the service right now, but Australians need to be patient.— Stuart Robert MP (@stuartrobertmp) March 23, 2020
Try logging on later today or even tomorrow.
We are working on expanding capacity for @myGovau, but the best option right now is for people to be patient.
At the time of publication, Downdetector had received more than 2000 reports of issues with myGov since 9:00 am AEDT.
On Sunday, the government announced new measures that allow eligible individuals to apply through myGov to access up to $10,000 of their superannuation this financial year.
Jobseekers will also get a $550 boost to their fortnightly welfare payments for six months.
Services Australia has been contacted for comment.
The problems come as all states and territories begin to shut down “non-essential services” from midday today to tackle the spread of COVID-19.
Pubs and clubs, gyms, cinemas and places of worship will begin to close from midday, while restaurants and cafes will be restricted to takeaway or home delivery only.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison on Monday said the measures were expected to be in place for at least six months.