Knowledge Matters blog

06 November 2023

Cyber incident

As many of you will know by now, we’ve been experiencing a major technology outage as a result of a cyber incident. This has affected our website, online systems and services, and some onsite services including public Wi-Fi.

We’re currently investigating the incident with the National Cyber Security Centre and cybersecurity specialists.


What is currently available?

The Library’s buildings remain fully open and the following services are available onsite:

· Reading Rooms (for personal study)

· any collection items ordered to consult on or before 28 October in the Reading Rooms

· very limited, manual collection item ordering in London via our printed catalogues, for items stored in St Pancras only

· Reader Registration – however, we’re currently only able to issue temporary passes. The levels of access these provide may differ depending on whether you are a lapsed or new Reader.

· Our onsite cafés, restaurants and shops are open. Our cafés and restaurant accept both card and cash. Our shop and bookshop can only accept cash payments at the moment.

Anyone who has purchased tickets to our new exhibition, Fantasy: Realms of Imagination, will still be able to use them. Exhibition tickets can also be bought onsite (but we can only accept cash).

All of our upcoming public events are going ahead as planned. Follow @EventsBL on X (formerly Twitter) for more information.


Business & IP Centres (BIPC)

Our BIPC in St Pancras is open as usual to support businesses but digital services accessed onsite are unavailable. You can find additional business support in BIPCs within regional and local libraries across the UK. Discover your local BIPC

You can still join BIPC events and webinars and access one-to-one support. See what’s available in London or around the UK.


Answering your questions

We know that many of you will have questions but please bear with us while we gather more information. We will update our channels with news as regularly as we can.

We’d like to thank all of our users and partners for your continued understanding. We’re really grateful for all your messages of support.


Useful links

While our website is unavailable, we’ve created a list of some resources and other websites that you may find useful.


British Library social media channels

For the most up-to-date information follow us on:

X (formerly Twitter)




Learning and families

Our Family Station is open from 10.00-12.00 every Friday. Follow @BL_Learning on X (formerly Twitter) for information about Learning events for teachers, students, adult learners and families.


British Library blogs

Asian and African Studies

Americas and Oceania Collections 

Collections Care 

Digital Scholarship 

Endangered Archives

English and Drama 

European Studies 

Innovations and enterprise

Sound and Vision 

Knowledge Matters 

Maps and Views 

Medieval Manuscripts 



Social Science 

The Newsroom 

UK Web Archive 

Untold Lives 


British Library events online

Catch up on our Living Knowledge Network events


British Library images, podcasts and videos


Images Online 




Other research resources


British Newspaper Archives 

Endangered Archive Programme (EAP) 


Local library services

Find out what your local library has to offer at LibraryOn.