Facebook, recovered after vast outage, cites configuration error, Corporate News

Facebook, recovered after vast outage, cites configuration error, Corporate News

by Subrat Patnaik, Eva Mathews and Sheila Dang

Oct 5 (Reuters) – Facebook FB.O blamed an “erroneous configuration change” on the global outage that prevented its 3.5 billion users from accessing the social network for several hours on Monday, as well as to its photo-sharing apps, Instagram, and messaging apps, WhatsApp.

The American digital giant, which made the announcement in a post on its blog Monday evening, did not specify who made the configuration change and whether it was planned.

Earlier, several Facebook employees, who declined to be identified and had lost access to their own tools due to the outage, told Reuters they believe the outage stemmed from an internal traffic routing error. to DNS (Domain Name System) servers.

Computer security experts have estimated that the failure was probably due to a configuration error, probably internally, without ruling out the theoretical hypothesis of sabotage. An attack coming from outside seemed much less plausible to them, because it required massive coordination or a very innovative technique.

This is the largest failure ever experienced by Facebook, according to the specialized site Downdetector, which lists the alert messages sent by users.

This breakdown occurred the day after a whistleblower, a former Facebook employee, spoke on CBS, accusing the social network with nearly 2 billion active users of having favored its interests at the expense of its subscribers. and controlling hateful content and misinformation.

The Facebook action, already down at the opening of Wall Street following these remarks, lost 4.90% on the New York Stock Exchange, where all technology stocks were mistreated in a context of rising bond yields.

“To all small and large businesses, families and individuals who depend on us, I am sorry,” Facebook Chief Technology Officer Mike Schroepfer wrote on Twitter, adding that it may take time to “return to 100 %”.

Facebook, the world’s second-largest online advertising platform, was losing about $545,000 (469,000 euros) per hour in ad revenue during the outage, according to estimates from Standard Media Index.

The social network had already suffered major outages in March and July.

These outages had a very relative long-term impact on the group’s revenue growth.

Access to Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp was affected around 4:00 p.m. GMT on Monday, before some users were able to access the social network again around 9:45 p.m. GMT.

Shortly after the outage began, Facebook admitted to its users’ difficulties, but did not elaborate on the nature of the problem or the number of users affected.

(Report Eva Mathews and Subrat Patnaik in Bangalore, with Tiyashi Datta, Nivedita Balu in Bangalore, Joseph Menn in San Francisco, Sheila Dang in Dallas; French version Nicolas Delame, Jean-Stéphane Brosse and Jean Terzian)


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