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Technology giant IBM and the Australian Bureau of Statistics are being accused of being woefully under-prepared for Tuesday night's census, with tech experts saying the systems should have been able to withstand the distributed denial of service attack, which apparently brought the site crashing down.

IBM was the main technology provider behind the Census website, having won a $9.6 million contract back in 2014 to host and manage the site.

Melbourne-based IT services firm Revolution IT was also contracted in advance of the Census to perform load-testing and ensure that high demand would not impact the performance of the website.

Both companies went to ground on Wednesday amid the fallout of the site failing, and didn't respond to questions about whether they had failed in their duties, or would be required to pay back some of the money they had received.

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