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CDK Global says ‘substantially all’ dealers are back online after a crippling hack

New York CNN  —  CDK Global said “substantially all” of the nearly 15,000 car dealerships that use its software across North America are back online to its core management system, almost two weeks since a cyber incident caused a software blackout. “We are happy to report that we are ahead of the anticipated schedule,” an automated message on CDK’s customer care phone line said. The outage began on Wednesday, June 19, after two cyber incidents halted the company’s systems, which provide software to nearly 15,000 car dealerships across North America, according to CDK. Auto dealerships use CDK’s software to manage everything from scheduling to records. The company said it is working actively to bring other applications live. It said it expects the Customer Relationship Management system to begin rolling out on July 4. The outage would have cost care dealerships millions of dollars more if it stretched on. According to an estimate by Anderson Economic Group, CDK’s system collapse could result in approximately $944 million in direct losses due to business interruptions for affected car dealers if the outage lasted a full three weeks. It’s an encouraging sign that operations can soon go back to normal. For days, CDK has said it had started restoring its software, but both car buyers and dealers remained at a standstill. It has suggested several times that a fix is in order, only to say then that its systems would remain out of commission for a while longer. The outage has made it difficult for dealers to track customer interactions, orders and sales, hurting their ability to earn a living. “It’s going to affect payroll here,” Bernard Irvin, a salesperson at a Ford dealership in Greenville, South Carolina, previously told CNN. “Why wouldn’t I receive my normal pay? I don’t really understand what this is all about.”