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Hundreds of thousands of outages reported as Facebook, Instagram crash

| Supplier news

By: Reuters & News24

Over 300 000 Facebook outages and nearly 50 000 Instagram outages were reported on Downdetector by Tuesday (05/03/2024) afternoon, Reuters reported. 

This included nearly 10 000 crash reports from South Africa. 

A further 200 outages were reported for messaging service WhatsApp, which - like Facebook and Instagram - is also owned by Meta. 

Meta spokesperson Andy Stone said the outages had been caused by a "technical issue". 

In a post on X, formerly Twitter, which remained unaffected, Stone said: 

Earlier today, a technical issue caused people to have difficulty accessing some of our services. We resolved the issue as quickly as possible for everyone who was impacted, and we apologise for any inconvenience.

The social media platforms started experiencing disruptions at around 10:00 E.T. (17:00 S.A.T.), Reuters reported. 

Users posting on Downdetector in South Africa reported trouble logging in and other error messages. 

In an earlier post on X, Stone had confirmed the outages but did not confirm or deny users' speculation regarding a potential security breach. 

"We're aware people are having trouble accessing our services. We are working on this now," Stone said. 

Stone's posts drew mixed reactions from users, with many expressing amusement at Meta having to post a statement using a competitor's platform. 

Several employees of Meta, meanwhile, said on anonymous messaging app Blind that they had been unable to log in to their internal work systems, which left them wondering if they were laid off, according to posts seen by Reuters.

The outage was among the top trending topics on X, formerly Twitter, with the platform's owner Elon Musk taking a shot at Meta with a post that said: "If you're reading this post, it's because our servers are working".

X itself has faced several disruptions to its service after Musk's $44 billion purchase of the social media platform in October 2022, with an outage in December causing issues for more than 77 000 users in countries from the US to France.

This article has been updated with additional comment from Meta.


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