Facebook and its Instagram and WhatsApp have been disrupted. The services have been inaccessible since about 6:40 p.m. Moscow time, and the failure is global in nature. Both mobile apps and desktop versions of Facebook and Instagram are inaccessible. According to The New York Times, Facebook's internal services, through which the company's employees communicate, are also not working; employees cannot get to their workplaces because their badges are not working.
The reasons for the failure are not yet fully clear. Officially, Facebook only said that they were working on fixing the problem and apologized for the incident, but did not provide any details. NY Times sources in Facebook's security service said it was unlikely that a hacker attack could have been the cause, as the affected services operate independently of each other. The Associated Press wrote that the failure was probably due to problems in the configuration of DNS servers. Journalist Brian Krebs pointed out that on the morning of October 4, DNS addresses associated with Facebook were removed from global routing tables. Reuters notes that this was most likely the result of an error, but theoretically internal sabotage could not be ruled out.
After Facebook became unavailable, users began to complain about the poor performance of other major services. Complaints came in about the lack of access to Twitter, Google, YouTube, Telegram, TikTok, and VKontakte; some Russian users also complained about the performance of the Internet in general. These failures were not global and were mainly caused by a sharp increase in the number of users who switched to other messengers and services due to the inaccessibility of Facebook. In particular, Telegram confirmed that the messenger had become slower due to the influx of WhatsApp users. In general, all the services affected by these problems remain available to the vast majority of users.
The Facebook crash sent stock markets tumbling. The Nasdaq Composite index of high-tech companies fell 2.2 percent in a few hours, the Dow Jones and the S&P 500 lost more than a percent. Shares of Facebook itself fell more than 5 percent. Company founder Mark Zuckerberg, according to Forbes, lost about $6 billion in real time and dropped from fifth to sixth place on the list of the world's richest people. Along with Facebook, other IT companies are also getting cheaper: Twitter shares lost 6.7% in value, Google - 3%, Amazon - 2.8%.
Facebook's failure was the longest since 2008. Back then, the social network was down for about a day. Moreover, in 2008, only 80 million people used Facebook, while now the number exceeds three billion. In 2019, Facebook was unavailable for an hour - the company attributed this to incorrect changes made to server settings.