What caused WhatsApp, Instagram, and Facebook to be down for more than 6 hours?

On Monday, October 4th, Facebook’s platforms—Instagram, Facebook Messenger, Whatsapp, and Oculus VR services—were down for approximately 6 hours around the world. Users of the social networking sites saw error warnings for the majority of the day, prompting the Silicon Valley firm’s stock to drop roughly 5%.

As users began to report problems, Facebook apologised on Twitter to everyone who had been impacted by the outage of Facebook-powered services. “We are experiencing networking issues and teams are working as fast as possible to debug and restore as fast as possible” said Mike Schroepfer, Facebook’s chief technical officer.

Facebook services eventually began to reappear after a few hours. The major global outage affected billions of users across the three platforms, and it was one of the company’s longest outages ever. Here’s what we’ve learned so far.

What Exactly Took Place?

A ‘Domain Name System’ (DNS) problem on Facebook’s home page, according to reports, was the reason of the outage. Cloudflare senior vice president Dane Knecht revealed that the social media behemoth’s border gateway protocol (BGP) circuits had experienced a “technical problem.” These routes are part of the Domain Name System (DNS), which is a critical component that decides where internet traffic should travel. A domain name like “facebook.com” is converted to an IP address like 123.45.67.890 using DNS. According to the Associated Press, if Facebook’s DNS records vanished, apps and site addresses would be unable to reach it.

Statement by Mark Zuckerberg

After the company’s internal tools went down and employees were barred from entering the building, Facebook and Instagram employees were ‘unable to do any work’ during the crisis. After a nearly six-hour outage owing to DNS routing issues, some users were able to access Facebook, Instagram, and Whatsapp. The CEO of Facebook, Mark Zuckerberg, has commented on the global outage, claiming that the services “are coming back online now.”

Platforms are being stabilized

A sophisticated DNS issue, such as the one that impacted Facebook, might take several hours for all platforms to perform properly on all networks, according to a Facebook statement. As a result, platforms are being introduced gradually and with caution.’ According to a Facebook official, the world’s largest social media site, which has billions of users globally, it may take longer for all services to stabilise.

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