Cloud Outage and the Fortune 500: Loss Scenarios

Parametrix presents four specific loss scenarios for Fortune 500.

Four distinct realistic loss scenarios were considered in the Parametrix analysis of Cloud Outage and the Fortune 500. Each is extreme and unprecedented, but significantly less severe than the extremely unlikely total global outage which is often mooted as a potential loss scenario.

Scenario 1: AWS us-east-1 goes down for 24 hours

This outage leads to a financial loss of $3.4 billion among the Fortune 500. The loss is concentrated in the following industries, in descending order of impact: Healthcare Services, Retail, Telecommunications, Financial services, and Software, which account for $2.5 billion of the loss.

Scenario 2: AWS us-east-1 goes down for 48 hours

This  scenario leads to a financial loss of $7.8 billion among the Fortune 500. The relative contribution of the industries changes order under this longer outage, with Manufacturing, Retail, Healthcare Services, Telecommunications, and Financial Services contributing $5.0 billion to the total. The increased contribution of Manufacturing is associated with the extended outage affecting inventory management and ultimately supply chains.

Scenario 3: Multiple East coast regions go down for 24 hours

Concurrent downtime among multiple cloud service providers could be caused by a physical event (e.g. Natural Catastrophe or regional infrastructure failure) that affects the data centers operated by all the cloud service providers in a geographical region. The financial loss among the Fortune 500 under this scenario is estimated to be $4.3 billion, with Retail, Healthcare Services, Financial Services, Telecommunication, and Manufacturing contributing $3.0 billion. 

Scenario 4: AWS all North American regions go down for 24 hours

This outage leads to a financial loss of $11.4 billion among the Fortune 500. The industries leading the loss are Healthcare Services, Retail, Airlines, Financial Services, and Software, which contribute $8.0 billion of the total loss.


Parametrix’s analysis on the Fortune 500 provides a snapshot of cloud usage, and insights into navigating the landscape of cyber systemic risk. This post is the fourth in a series about identifying dependencies, monitoring performance, and managing accumulation. You can read more about it in the Parametrix report revealing the Fortune 500’s exposure to cloud downtime among the three major providers - Amazon Web Services, Google Cloud, and Microsoft Azure.

The Parametrix Team
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April 24, 2024