Handling Postmortem Reports

Incidents with severe impact usually deserve a public postmortem report. The best way to restore trust and delight your users is with an authentic, detailed postmortem report.

While some organizations add postmortems to their status pages, we found that most are using their primary company blog.

We made it simple to link directly to these external postmortems from within an incident. Learn more


There is no standard when it comes to writing a postmortem report. Basically, just be authentic and describe what happened, what was impacted, and what steps were taken to prevent this from reoccurring in the future.

We’ve compiled some resources to help you get started crafting postmortem reports that will delight your users. Below are a ton of examples of actual postmortems from some of the most popular services on the internet.

Example Postmortem Reports

Amazon Web Services EU-West Outage

Backblaze Data Center Outage

BBC Online Outage

Buffer Security Breach

CircleCI Database Performance Issue

CloudFlare Outage

DigitalOcean Power Issue

DNSimple DDoS Attack

Docker Security Vulnerability

Dropbox Outage

Etsy Site Outage

Facebook Downtime

Foursquare Outage

GitHub DNS Outage

Google Services Outage

Groove 15-Hour Outage

Heroku Application Outage

HipChat Service Issues

Joyent US-East-1 Outage

Keen IO Performance Issues

LastPass Data Center Outage

Linode Data Center Outage

Mailgun Delays

MaxCDN DNS Outage

Microsoft Azure Storage Service Interruption

Netflix Christmas Eve Outage

npm Outage

PagerDuty Downtime

PageKite DNS Outage

Pixafy Network Errors

puush Security Breach

Qualys Cloud Suite Outage

Shopify Asset Server Outage

Simple Performance Issues

Spotify European Outage

Stack Overflow Offline

Status.io S3 Outage

Twilio Billing Incident

Tropo Outage

Vero DDoS Attack

Zello Capacity Issues

And finally, here’s some good reads if you’re interested in improving your postmortem skills:

How To Apologize For Server Outages

System Down! An Application Outage Survival Guide

Documenting an outage for a post-mortem review

Blameless PostMortems and a Just Culture

Postmortem of an Outage

The Three Ingredients of a Great Postmortem

How to Write Great Outage Post-Mortems

Screencast – How to write an Incident Report / Postmortem