Social media platforms Facebook, WhatsApp and Instagram are starting to come back online, after a major outage meant millions couldn’t use their platforms for most of the night.
In a very bad day for parent company Facebook, its shares closed 4.9 per cent lower on Wall Street, having plummeted as much as 5.74 per cent in the afternoon.
Facebook’s Chief Technology Officer Mike Schroepfer apologised “sincerely” to users four hours into the outage and said his teams were working “as fast as possible to debug and restore” Facebook powered services.
As all three apps are owned by Facebook, they share the same IT infrastructure. Users began reporting that the apps had failed just before 5pm.
App users could open WhatsApp and Instagram, but the platforms failed to update or show any new content, or send or receive messages.
Meanwhile, users who attempted to open the Facebook website were greeted with an error page or a message that said their internet browser failed to connect.
Facebook’s head of communications took to the only major social media platform that was still working, Twitter, to acknowledge the outages and said the company was working to resolve the issue.
Thousands of people took to Twitter to report the problems, including sites such as Down Detector, which pool user reports of internet outages.
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Social media management tool Hootsuite acknowledged the problems and said it was working with the apps.
“Facebook and Instagram are currently experiencing issues,” the company wrote in an update to users. “You may encounter issues performing actions for any Facebook or Instagram profile within Hootsuite.
“Our team is working with Facebook and Instagram to resolve the issue as quickly as possible. We thank you in advance for your understanding and patience.”
Meanwhile, WhatsApp also tweeted to say it would update users when things were “back to normal.”
Live updates to follow.