Facebook, Instagram down? Instagram back up, users reporting issues with Facebook

Facebook said Thursday it had fixed the technical issue that led to a widespread outage across its services for almost 24 hours on Wednesday

Facebook said Thursday it had fixed the technical issue that led to a widespread outage across its services for almost 24 hours on Wednesday

A partial Facebook outage affecting users around the world has stretched beyond 14 hours, but was showing some signs of ending early Thursday. The last time the social media network had an disruption this big was in 2008. when it had 150 million users, compared to its 2.3 billion monthly users today.

Facebook, the world's largest social network, had to turn to its rival Twitter to explain that its group of hugely popular apps were having difficulties.

As of early Thursday the problem remained in parts of Europe and Asia, although moaning from America and else where kept coming. Instagram announced it was back online.

Separately, the New York Times reported on Wednesday that United States federal prosecutors were conducting a criminal investigation into data deals Facebook struck with more than 150 technology companies such as Amazon.com Inc and Apple Inc.

A source told NBC Bay Area news anchor Raj Mathai on March 13 that the database got "overloaded", and "we are racing to spin up new machines as others go down".

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The interruption also extended to Facebook-owned apps like Instagram, Messenger and WhatsApp, totaling more than 2 billion users who were unable to gain access to the online services from Wednesday until Thursday afternoon. The hashtag #FacebookDown and #InstagramDown were trending on Twitter for much of the day.

The length of the outage is another publicity problem for a company already dealing with privacy issues and regulatory probes. Twitter even made the subject into a Twitter Moment.

Thursday morning, outage-tracking website DownDetector.com showed a steep drop in reports of Facebook problems between Wednesday and Thursday morning.

'Yesterday, a server configuration issue made it hard for people to access our apps and services.

"Yesterday, as a result of a server configuration change, many people had trouble accessing our apps and services", the company says in a tweet. "Nothing comes up", wrote one woman at around 10:30 a.m. ET.

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