Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp part of major outage

The outage affects nearly 7 billion users between the three platforms.

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Facebook’s corporate symbol. Facebook’s parent company Meta agreed in December to settle a data privacy lawsuit for $750 million.

Facebook-owned platforms all stopped working around 11:30 a.m. ET Monday morning.

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Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp have apparently all gone down in a major outage.

The social network and the Facebook-owned platforms all stopped working around 11:30 a.m. ET Monday morning according to the site Down Detector. The outage affects nearly 7 billion users between the three platforms.

Users going to Facebook’s site saw an error page or an onscreen message that said, “Sorry, something went wrong. We’re working on it and we’ll get it fixed as soon as we can.”

Instagram and WhatsApp are not showing new or updated content. On Instagram, messages including ”Couldn’t Refresh Feed” or “5xx Server Error” appeared.

Facebook did not immediately respond to USA TODAY’s request for comment.

Real-time online monitor Downdetector said it has seen more than 5.6 million reports about issues with Facebook and its services Instagram and WhatsApp since 11:15 a.m. ET Monday. Downdetector also said it received more than 123,000 reports of problems for Facebook, 97,000 for Instagram, 34,000 for WhatsApp and 9,600 for Facebook Messenger.

“Most users are reporting troubles with the website and apps overall,” Downdetector said in an update. “This outage is still very much ongoing.”

But the company took to Twitter and tweeted: “We’re aware that some people are having trouble accessing our apps and products. We’re working to get things back to normal as quickly as possible, and we apologize for any inconvenience.”

The outage comes after a whistleblower said that the world’s largest social network is prioritizing profits over users’ safety.

Former Facebook product manager Frances Haugen said in an exclusive CBS’ “60 Minutes” interview Sunday that a 2018 change to the content flow in Facebook’s news feed contributed to more divisiveness and ill will in a network ostensibly created to bring people closer together.

Facebook’s stock was down nearly 6% on Monday.

Is Facebook.com for sale? Twitter reacts

How did all these networks get affected at the same time? Computer security writer Brian Krebs tweeted a possible answer for some of the problems: Facebook and Instagram were apparently removed from the DNS (Domain Name System) servers that basically make up the white pages of the internet.

“The DNS records that tell systems how to find Facebook.com or Instagram.com got withdrawn this morning from the global routing tables,” Krebs tweeted. “We don’t know why this change was made. It could well have been the result of an internal, system wide change or update that went awry. It’s all speculation at this point why. FB alone is in control over its DNS records.”

Cybersecurity analyst Anis Haboubi tweeted what appears to be a “For Sale” ad for the Facebook.com domain.

Krebs saw it, too, and found domain name company GoDaddy also offering Facebook.com for sale. “Bidding starts at....one beeleon dollars!” he tweeted.

Twitter had some reports of issues, but it was operational enough for the site – and CEO Jack Dorsey – to have some fun at Facebook’s expense. With social media users all coming to Twitter, the site tweeted out, “hello literally everyone.”

And Dorsey replied to the Facebook.com domain sale posting asking “how much?”

Even Instagram had to go to Twitter to tell its users that it was aware of, and working on, the problem.

Read more at usatoday.com

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