WhatsApp, Instagram, Facebook outage affects users worldwide

All three of Meta Platforms' social media apps – WhatsApp, Facebook, Instagram – are back up after an hours-long outage was reported for thousands of users around the world Wednesday, making it the second worldwide outage for Meta in less than a month.

The outage began just before 2 p.m. EST according to internet tracking website Downdetector.com, peaking about a half hour later. Users also began reporting issues with Facebook and Instagram soon after.

During the height of the outage, WhatsApp posted an update on X stating, "We know some people are experiencing issues right now, we're working on getting things back to 100% for everyone as quickly as possible."

At about 6 p.m., WhatsApp followed up with, "And we’re back. Happy chatting!," without divulging the cause of the outage. So far, Meta has also been mum on the root issue.

Downdetector tracked about 24,000 WhatsApp users in the US, and another 6,600 between Facebook and Instagram at the 2:30 p.m. EST peak.

The outage also impacted thousands of users in the UK, India and Brazil, Downdetector showed.

WhatsApp, Instagram, Facebook down

The entire scenario is reminiscent of another mass outage that took place on March 5th. In that outage, the same three Meta-owned apps were also down for hours.

Although rumors surfaced that the March 5th disruption may have been caused by a malicious distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attack, the next day, Meta spokesperson Andy Stone said it was caused by a resolved technical issue.

As has become the norm lately in social media outages, most users flocked to X, searching to find out if Meta's app issues were widespread or isolated, posting their favorite memes about the debacle on the Musk-owned platform.

During the outage, the majority of WhatsApp users had issues with the app and receiving messages, Downdetector showed, while close to two-thirds of Instagram users also said they had problems with the app, with about half of them unable to access their feed.

Following suit, roughly 60% of Facebook users reported issues with the app, 29% with the website, and another 12% reported having trouble logging into their accounts.

At about 4:12 p.m. EST the number of affected dropped down into the hundreds for WhatsApp and Facebook, while Instagram continued to show the site was down for thousands of users more than two hours later.

Some users also reported issues with Meta's Threads and Facebook messenger apps.

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