The computer system contained classified information, and the Air Force hasn’t said what caused the outage, according to Buzzfeed.
A computer system called SIPRNet went out of commission at Creech Air Force Base in Indian Springs, Nevada, in September. The base is home to a key drone flight center.
The cause of the problem is currently unknown, according to Buzzfeed. That means anything from technical failures to hackers could be behind the system’s down time. The US Air Force posted notice of the outage on a website that lists government contracting opportunities called fbo.gov.
Seeking bids to offer technical help, the posting describes a computer system on the edge of another collapse.
“The services were somewhat restored with the use of multiple less powerful devices,” the posting says. “This temporary solution stabilized the services, but will not be able to maintain the demand for very long.”
SIPRNet is a parallel network to the internet that allows the transmission of sensitive data, according to Buzzfeed. An Air Force spokeswoman confirmed the outage to Buzzfeed and told the publication the outage was not related to drone targeting malfunctions that occurred around the same time, leading to civilian deaths in Afghanistan as well as other lethal mistakes.
The Air Force office of public affairs didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.
The base, along with Nellis Air Force Base, also in Nevada, are up for an inspection from the US Cyber Command, an arm of the military responsible for defending US computer systems and developing the ability to hack those of other countries.