The Electronic Benefits Transfer system managed by JP Morgan Chase crashed on Friday, leaving millions of recipients of the benefits in ten states without a way to put food on the table.
Bank officials said that the outage affected EBT recipients in Florida, New York, Pennsylvania, Georgia, South Carolina, Indiana, Kentucky, Connecticut, West Virginia, Delaware. It also hit the U.S. Virgin Islands.
Florida’s Department of Children and Families said that some 3.6 million people were unable to access their benefits when the system crashed.
According to JP Morgan, a technical glitch was responsible for the outage.
Credit cards, debit cards and other forms of electronic money transfer and processing were not affected. A bank spokesman for JP Morgan would not elaborate on the cause of the glitch.
Service for frustrated EBT residents was restored after about 6 hours on Friday.
Nearly 50 million Americans rely on the government’s Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program to cover the costs of basic needs like food, though in some states EBT related benefits can be used for the purchase alcohol, tobacco and gasoline.
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