Facebook Suffers its Longest Outage

Image source Gallo  Getty

"11 hours and still global wide outage continues", read another comment.

San Francisco: Facebook has blamed a server configuration change that caused the outage of its app along with Instagram, WhatsApp and Messenger.

A Facebook spokesperson, Tom Parnell reportedly stated that the company is aware of the ongoing problems that the users are facing and that company engineers are now working on resolving the issues as soon as possible.

The timing of a major outage is sub-optimal for Facebook, already embattled by revelations it failed to safeguard user data or stanch the spread of hate speech, fake news and other forms of disinformation. Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp saw service interruptions nearly all of Wednesday, and the company kept stating that this interruption was not because of a cyber attack.

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Reflecting that shift, the chief executive said that although Facebook meant to keep Messenger, Instagram and WhatsApp as separate apps it would work to provide interoperability for their messaging capabilities, and extend that interoperability to SMS messages. As its systems were recovering from the outage, the social networking giant apologized for the inconvenience to users.

"Yesterday, as a result of a server configuration change, many people had trouble accessing our apps and services", the company said in a statement posted on Twitter. Meanwhile, numerous WhatsApp users complained that they were unable to send any picture-based messages. The outage period proved profitable for Telegram which reportedly signed up a whopping three million new users. In case you are not aware, Facebook controls 22 percent of the digital advertising market and makes an estimated US$90 million a day of advertising revenue so yesterday's downtime will definitely have significant ramifications.

A spokesman for the social network said the company was cooperating with investigators in multiple federal probes.

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