Face palm: Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp affected by outage

14 Mar 2019

Image: © OBprod/Stock.adobe.com

Most severe outage since Facebook was a just wee social network in 2008.

Facebook platforms around the world have been affected by a mystery outage that left the company’s various properties, including Instagram and WhatsApp, unusable yesterday and today (14 March).

The company’s Oculus VR platform is also experiencing issues.

‘We’re working to resolve the issue as soon as possible’

Future Human

The cause of the disruption has not been made public but it has to be the most severe outage since 2008 when Facebook had just 150m users rather than the 2.3bn monthly active users it claims in 2019.

For some users who have their apps back working, the apps are missing some major functions.

Sinister or not sinister, that is the question

The company said that the outages were not caused by a distributed denial of service (DDoS) attack.

“We’re aware that some people are currently having trouble accessing the Facebook family of apps,” Facebook said in a statement. “We’re working to resolve the issue as soon as possible.”

The outage issue comes on the heels of 2018 being a year of mega-blunders for the social network, from the Cambridge Analytica scandal that raged a year ago to a massive breach that affected at least 50m accounts and a bug that was disclosed in December where apps had unauthorised access to photos that users had uploaded but hadn’t made public.

The latest outage is understood to have begun at around 4pm UTC on Wednesday (13 March).

The outage has been felt all across the world, from Europe to the US and Japan.

Facebook said that it was still investigating the overall impact, “including the possibility of refunds for advertisers”.

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years