Facebook services back online after global outage

Muriel Colon
March 17, 2019

Facebook's services including its main website, Facebook Messenger, Instagram, and WhatsApp all suffered massive outages this week that left millions around the globe unable to connect.

Facebook's global outage that affected access to its services was the biggest since the company came into existence.

Facebook says that a major outage across its family of social networking services was the result of internal problems at the company rather than a BGP route leak at a network operator.

Users cited snags not only with Facebook, but also photo- sharing site Instagram, messaging tools Messenger and Whatsapp and Oculus virtual reality devices.

Telegram has become one of the popular social media platforms actively used by many people, this is evident by the stats which revealed that the platform has 200 million monthly active users.

While the outage continued, the New York Times reported that USA prosecutors have launched a criminal investigation into the social network's practice of sharing users' data with companies without letting its members know.

Facebook acknowledged the outage previously via a tweet Wednesday, saying, "We're aware that some people are now having trouble accessing the Facebook family of apps. We've now resolved the issues and our systems are recovering", the company stated yesterday.

"It has already been reported that there are ongoing federal investigations, including by the Department of Justice", a Facebook spokesman said in response to an AFP inquiry. Regions affected include the NY area, parts of California and the Seattle region, according to Downdetector.

Facebook, which has roughly 2.3bn monthly users, recovered from the interruption yesterday morning and its services are now operating normally.

In a post on its Twitter page, Facebook blamed the outage on a server configuration change, but fell short of giving further details as to what that was all about. "Accordingly, our liability shall be limited to the fullest extent permitted by applicable law, and under no circumstance will we be liable to you for any lost profits, revenues, information, or data, or consequential, special, indirect, exemplary, punitive, or incidental damages arising out of, or related to, Facebook Products, even if we have been advised of the possibility of such damages". "We've provided public testimony, answered questions, and pledged that we will continue to do so". Regulators, and now prosecutors, appear intent on determining whether this was done in ways that let users know what was happening and protected privacy.

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