Facebook blamed a “faulty configuration change” for an almost six-hour outage on Monday that kept the organization’s 3.5 billion users from getting to its social media and messaging services such as WhatsApp, Instagram, and Messenger.
The company in a late Monday blog post did not specify who executed the configuration change and whether it was planned.
A few Facebook employees who declined to be named had told Reuters before that they believed that the outage was caused by an internal mistake in how Internet traffic is routed to its systems.
The failure of internal communication devices and different assets that rely upon that same network in order to work compounded the error, the employees said. Security experts have said an inadvertent mistake or sabotage by an insider were both plausible.
“We want to make clear at this time we believe the root cause of this outage was a faulty configuration change,” Facebook said in the blog.
The Facebook blackout is the largest ever tracked by Web monitoring group Downdetector.
The blackout was the second blow to the social media giant in as many days after a whistleblower on Sunday accused the company of repeatedly prioritizing profit over clamping down on hate speech and misinformation.
As the world flocked to contending applications like Twitter and TikTok, shares of Facebook fell 4.9 percent, their biggest daily drop since last November, amid a broader selloff in technology stocks on Monday. Shares rose about half a percent in after-hours trade following the resumption of service.
“To every small and large business, family, and the individual who depends on us, I’m sorry,” Facebook Chief Technology Officer Mike Schroepfer tweeted, adding that it “may take some time to get to 100 percent.”
“Facebook basically locked its keys in its car,” tweeted Jonathan Zittrain, director of Harvard’s Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society.
Twitter on Monday reported higher-than-normal use, which prompted a few issues in people getting to posts and direct messages.
In one of the day’s most well known tweets, video streaming company Netflix shared a meme from its new hit show Suid Game captioned “When Instagram & Facebook are down,” that showed a person labeled “Twitter” holding up a character on the verge of falling labeled “everyone.”
Inside a Facebook group for advertisement buyers, one part quipped after help brought that back “heaps of individuals looked through today ‘how to run google advertisements for customers.'”
Facebook, which is the world’s biggest dealer of online promotions after Google, was losing about $545,000 ( generally Rs. 4 crores) in US advertisement revenue per hour during the outage, according to estimates from ad measurement firm Standard Media Index.
Past downtime at Internet companies has had a little long-term effect on their revenue growth, however.
Facebook’s administrations, including customer applications like Instagram, working environment devices it offers to organizations and interior projects, went dull early afternoon Eastern time (9:30pm IST). Access began to return around 5:45pm ET (3:15am IST).
Soon after the outage started, Facebook acknowledged users were having trouble accessing its apps but did not provide any specifics about the nature of the problem or say how many users were affected.