A cat has been blamed for a four-hour IT outage at the Veterans Affairs Medical Center (VAMC) in Kansas City, Missouri.

cat on keyboard
– Getty Images

First reported by the Register, a cat supposedly jumped on a technician's keyboard, causing the server cluster to be deleted.

The result of this was a four-hour outage while the VAMC got to work resuming systems.

The Register was told this story by a source who was in a regular weekday call where the US government department reviewed the recent IT problem. During the call, Kurt Delbane, assistant secretary for information and technology, and CIO at the Department of Veteran Affairs reportedly said something to the effect of: "This is why I have a dog."

The Department of Veteran Affairs provided the following statement: "On September 13, 2023, the Kansas City VAMC experienced an issue with image transfer within Vista due to an inadvertent deletion of server profiles. The issue was quickly identified and the system was restored within four hours. There have been no further issues or direct impacts to veterans from this incident."

Vista is the Veterans Health Information System Technology Architecture - consisting of more than 180 clinical, financial, and administrative applications integrated within a single database.

The VA declined to comment on whether this issue was indeed caused by a cat.