The world’s largest social media company, Facebook witnessed an outage on its all platforms, which include Instagram and Whatsapp. On Monday, more than three billion users were not able to access Facebook services. This is said to be the company’s worst outage since 2008, which left the company offline for one day. However, in 2008, the company had only 80 million users.
The outage not only impacted its online services but also affected its internal systems. CBNC reported that employees were not able to access their tools to track the information of how many users are surfing its platforms. According to a person familiar with the matter, the shutdown was so bad that employees were not able to login to resolve the issues. “To the huge community of people and businesses around the world who depend on us: we’re sorry,” Facebook said in a statement.
Facebook’s shutdown of services comes after the company’s whistleblower, France Haugen revealed its identity and unveiled Facebook’s wrongdoing. She was a former product manager working on the civic integrity team at Facebook. An Instagram employee cited that the latest outage was karma for the “recent whistleblower ordeal.” However, after six long hours of outage, Facebook was online again.
The company had to send a small team of software engineers to California and physically entered the data center room, New York Times reported. The publication also said that the security badges of engineers were not working, and that’s why they had to manually reset the servers.
Facebook said in a separate blog post that the reason for the outage was configuration changes in routers that led to the failure of the system. “This disruption to network traffic had a cascading effect on the way our data centers communicate, bringing our services to a halt,” the company said in a statement.
“We’ve been working hard to restore access to our apps and services and are happy to report they are coming back online now. Thank you for bearing with us,” the company said in a statement. Meanwhile, ThousandEyes, a network monitoring service acquired by Cisco, said that the outage was the result of DNS failure. Two years back, Facebook also witnessed a similar outage, but it lasted only for one hour.
On its worst outage, Facebook’s Chief Technology Officer, Mike Schroepfer said in a tweet that “Sincere apologies to everyone impacted by outages of Facebook powered services right now. We are experiencing networking issues and teams are working as fast as possible to debug and restore as fast as possible.” Even though it was back online, some users did face some issues accessing it.” According to an advertising analytics company, Facebook was losing more than half a million in ad revenue per hour.
“Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp, and Messenger are coming back online now. Sorry for the disruption today — I know how much you rely on our services to stay connected with the people you care about,” Facebook’s CEO Mark Zuckerberg said in a Facebook post.
On Monday, Facebook’s share tanked nearly 5%. Even though it was down 4.89% on the market closing, its stock has gained 21% since the beginning of 2020. The company was not the only one that witnessed volatility in share price. Companies such as Pinterest, Snapchat, and Twitter stocks slumped more than 5%. To announce the news of the outage, Facebook turned to Twitter.
“We’re aware that some people are having trouble accessing our apps and products,” the company said in a tweet. “We’re working to get things back to normal as quickly as possible, and we apologize for any inconvenience.” On the other hand, Twitter welcomed all social media users by tweeting, “hello literally everyone.” Twitter users didn’t lose the opportunity of sharing memes on Facebook’s shutdown. Meanwhile, brands like McDonald’s, Netflix, and Tampax jumped on the moment marketing bandwagon.