Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp not down due to cyber attack

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The long weekend turned out murky to many as Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp were down to users across the world. And those affected took to Twitter to express their grief about the issue within the first hour. Some complained that the mobile and desktop versions of Facebook-owned sites were down to them till mid-afternoon on September 3rd, 2018. While some said that the services were unavailable throughout the day for almost 18 hours.

Interestingly, the downtime coincided with the Labor Day holiday in the United States and this made things worse as many of the Facebook and Messenger users couldn’t connect with their near & dear ones.

Surprisingly, twitter groups run by a renowned news organization dropped in a speculation that the downtime could be a result of a cyber invasion on Facebook-owned servers and this could be an act of one of the United States cyber adversaries.

Some even added fuel to the speculation by saying that the attack could be retaliation of Iran to Facebook’s latest decision to wipe off hundreds of accounts related to coordinated information campaigns originating from Tehran and Russia.

However, the news is out that the downtime was caused by a technical glitch and not due to a cyber attack as claimed by some media resources. It’s also said that the interruption was temporary and as the servers were brought back to life within 3 hours of disruption.

As per the stats provided by down detector, the outage appeared to have started around 4:26 PM ET and lasted till 7 PM.

Users in the US, Europe, South America, Australia and some parts of Asia were having problems while logging in, commenting and sharing posts during the said time frame.

The messages displayed by the websites were as follows-

Facebook- Sorry, something went wrong.

Instagram- We couldn’t connect to Instagram. Make sure you’re connected to the internet and try again

WhatsApp users couldn’t receive or send any messages during the said time frame

A source from Facebook admitted that the outage could have lasted for hours to many due to some technical issues with their internet service providers.

On the whole, over 38% of Facebook users, 40% of messenger users, 23% of WhatsApp and 42% of Instagram users is said to have experienced a total blackout yesterday.

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Naveen Goud is a writer at Cybersecurity Insiders covering topics such as Mergers & Acquisitions, Startups, Cyber Attacks, Cloud Security and Mobile Security

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