Fresh to home

Facebook, WhatsApp, and Instagram remained disconnected and as a result, a huge number of users couldn’t get to the social media platforms during the October 4th, 2021 worldwide outage. 

Why did this happen?

The outage began on October 4, 2021, and required a maximum time to get resolved. This is the worst outage that happened for Facebook since a 2019 incident took its site offline for over 24 hours, as the downtime hit hardest on the private companies and creators who depend on these administrations for their pay.


Facebook gave a clarification for the outage on October 4th, 2021 evening, saying that it was because of a configuration issue. The organization says it doesn’t really accept that any user information was affected.

Facebook said that the faulty configuration change affected the organization’s internal tools and systems which confounded attempts to determine the issue. The outage hampered Facebook’s capacity to handle the crash bringing down internal tools expected to solve the issue. 

Facebook said that the outage removed communications between Facebook’s server centers that caused interruptions as workers couldn’t communicate with one another. 

Workers who were signed into work tools, for example, Google Docs and Zoom before the outage were able to work on that, yet some workers who signed in with their work email were blocked. Facebook engineers have been sent to the organization’s US server centers to fix the issue.

How were users got affected?

Millions of users across the world were wondering when the issues will be fixed, with more than 60,000 complaints held up with DownDetector. The issue came soon after 4.30 pm when WhatsApp crashed, which was followed by outages revealed for Facebook itself and Instagram. 

The Facebook Messenger service is likewise out, leaving millions of people all throughout the world using Twitter DMs, phone text messages, calls, or addressing each other face to face to speak with one another.

The services have been appeared to be patchy for users with some reporting that some sites were still working or had started working again, while most people say they were still out for them.

Those attempting to open the sites on the desktop were reportingly being met with a black-white page and a message that read “500 server error”.

While the outages had hit millions of people’s methods of communication, there are also thousands of businesses that rely on Facebook in particular, and its Marketplace function, which was effectively closed down while Facebook was fixing the problem.

What were the previous massive outages that happened before this?

December 14, 2020

Google saw all its major apps, including YouTube and Gmail, go offline, leaving millions unable to access key services. The company said the outage had occurred within its authentication system, which is used to log people into their accounts, due to an “internal storage quota issue”. In an apology to its users, Google said the issue was resolved in under an hour.

April 14, 2019

It is not the first time Facebook-owned platforms have been affected by an outage, as a similar incident occurred over two years ago. The hashtags #FacebookDown, #instagramdown and #whatsappdown were all trending worldwide on Twitter. Many people ended up joking that they were relieved at least one popular social media platform was still working in a similar way to what occurred on October 4th, 2021 evening.

November 20, 2018

Facebook and Instagram were also affected a few months prior when users of both platforms reported being unable to open pages or sections on the apps. Both acknowledged the matter but neither commented on the cause of the issue.

Impact of this massive outage

Mark Zuckerberg’s personal wealth has fallen by nearly $7 billion in a few hours, knocking him down a notch on the list of the world’s richest people, after a whistleblower came forward and outages took Facebook Inc.’s flagship products offline.

The stock slide on Monday sent Zuckerberg’s worth down to $120.9 billion, dropping him below Bill Gates to No. 5 on the Bloomberg Billionaires Index. He’s lost about $19 billion of wealth since Sept. 13, when he was worth nearly $140 billion, according to the index.