‘Major technology outage’ reported at British Library after cyber incident

The British Library has said a “major technology outage” has hit online services, public wifi at the site and its website.

The research library in London, which has a large deposit of the UK and world’s book collections, is investigating the issue.

On Saturday, the library revealed it was experiencing technical issues before saying a few days later that the UK’s intelligence and cyber agency was assessing the issue.

In a statement on Tuesday, the library said: “The British Library is experiencing a major technology outage, as a result of a cyber incident.

“This is affecting online systems and services, our website, and onsite services including our reading rooms.

“We are investigating the incident with the support of the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) and cybersecurity specialists.

“We are very grateful for the support and understanding we have had from our users, staff and partners.

“The Library’s sites remain fully open to the public and details on the services that remain available can be found via @britishlibrary on X (formerly Twitter).”

An NCSC spokesperson told the PA news agency: “We are working with the British Library to fully understand the impact of an incident.”

The British Library said on X that the building, near St Pancras railway station, continues to be open and visitors can access the reading rooms for personal study.

Items ordered before October 26 can also continue to be collected, the library added, and there is “very limited” pick-up for books which can be found in its printed catalogues.

Speaking about its latest exhibition, the library also wrote on X: “If you have tickets to Fantasy: Realms of Imagination, you’ll still be able to use them.

“You can also buy tickets onsite but we can only accept cash.”

The British Library boasts that it contains more than 170 million items.