Video calling platform Skype has been hit by a global outage that has locked users out for several hours.
The problems first surfaced just before 9:30am on Monday morning (21 September) but were still affecting the Microsoft-owned system internationally well into the afternoon. According to user site Down Detector, there have been thousands of reported problems this morning, mostly concerning log ins and sending or receiving messages.
When trying to access the platform, consumers are met with the message: "We're a bit overloaded right now... Please try again later, or download Skype to use it anytime."
The problem appears to be affecting users in the UK and Europe, but as America wakes up it appears the outage stretches across the world - and there is no word yet on when the system will be back up.
Skype is down in Europe. pic.twitter.com/75JLN7wDJo— Alexandre Dreyfus (@alex_dreyfus) September 21, 2015
Skype has come under criticism for failing to acknowledge the problem for several hours.
At 11am it released a statement saying: "We have detected an issue that is affecting Skype in a number of ways. If you're signed in to Skype, you will not be able to change your status and your contacts will all show as offline even if they are online. As a result, you won’t be able to start Skype calls to them..