Facebook Inc. suffered its third major outage this year, with users across the world unable to access the social network or its suite of services such as Facebook Messenger, Instagram and WhatsApp.
Facebook and Instagram were inaccessible on Sunday morning for several hours with both sites refusing to refresh, while messages were unable to be sent or received in WhatsApp or the Messenger app.
Downdetector, a site that tracks website outages, reported problems with Facebook starting as early as 6.30 a.m Sunday morning in New York. The issues affected users in Asia, Europe and the U.S., according to the site.
A Facebook spokesman apologized for any inconvenience. “Earlier today, some people may have experienced trouble connecting to the family of apps. The issue has since been resolved; we’re sorry for any inconvenience,” he said in an email.
The social media networks were back up and running in New York by 9.30.a.m, but irate users turned to Twitter to vent during the blackout.
“Ok… who broke #Facebook?” Dean Miller tweeted from New York. “What is wrong with Facebook,” Kularakkhita asked in a tweet from Thailand. “All Facebook services are down,” said Daniel Chernenkov in Israel.
In late January, the Instagram app crashed, and WhatsApp users worldwide were also unable to send or receive messages. Last month, Facebook faced its most widespread and persistent system outage, with users unable to access the social network for more than 12 hours.
The outages add to the woes of Facebook, already embattled by revelations it has failed to safeguard user data or stanch the spread of hate speech, fake news and other forms of disinformation.
(c) 2019, Bloomberg · Olivia Carville