Facebook shares tank nearly TWO PER CENT after a 17-hour outage meant social network went down for users worldwide
- The social giant’s shares tanked 1.72 per cent in morning trading on Thursday
- Drop in shares comes after a 17-hour partial outage made network inaccessible
- Users worldwide were unable to use Facebook, WhatsApp and Instagram
- It’s also believed that a New York Times report contributed to drop in the shares
- Times reported that US federal prosecutors were conducting criminal investigation into data deals Facebook struck with 150 technology companies
Facebook’s stock dropped nearly 2 per cent after a 17-hour partial outage made the world’s largest social network inaccessible to users across the globe.
DownDetector website – one of the internet’s most used sources of numbers on outages – showed the number of complaints had peaked at more than 12,000, gradually falling to about 180 as of 11am EST on Thursday.
But by then Facebook’s shares fell 1.72 per cent in morning trading on Thursday. And by 4pm, the shares dropped to 1.85 per cent.
Meanwhile, it’s also believed that a New York Times report contributed to the drop in Facebook’s shares.
On Wednesday, the Times reported that US 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.
Facebook’s stock dropped nearly 2 per cent (depicted above) after a 17-hour partial outage made the world’s largest social network inaccessible to users across the globe
But by then Facebook’s shares fell 1.72 per cent in morning trading on Thursday. And by 4pm, the shares dropped to 1.85 per cent (above)
The agreements let the companies see users’ friends, contact information and other data, sometimes without consent.
Facebook claimed in June 2018 that it provided dozens of tech companies with special access to user data after publicly saying it restricted such access in 2015.
The Times reported that Amazon, Apple, Microsoft and Sony, cut data sharing deals with the world’s dominant social media platform.
However, Facebook continued sharing information with 61 hardware and software makers after it said it discontinued the practice in May 2015.
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A New York grand jury has subpoenaed records from two smartphone makers involved in the partnerships, anonymous sources told the newspaper.
A spokesman for the social network said the company was cooperating with investigators in multiple federal probes, without addressing the grand jury inquiry specifically.
‘We’ve provided public testimony, answered questions and pledged that we will continue to do so,’ the spokesman said.
Facebook has phased out most of the partnerships over the past two years.
Meanwhile, it’s also believed that a New York Times report contributed to the drop in Facebook’s shares. The Times reported that US federal prosecutors were conducting a criminal investigation into data deals Facebook struck with 150 technology companies
It is not known when the grand jury inquiry, overseen by prosecutors with the US attorney’s office for the Eastern District of New York, began or exactly what it is focusing on.
Facebook is facing a slew of lawsuits and regulatory inquiries over its privacy practices, including ongoing investigations by the US Federal Trade Commission, the Securities and Exchange Commission and two state agencies in New York.
In addition to looking at the data deals, the probes focus on disclosures that the company shared the user data of 87 million people with Cambridge Analytica, a British consulting firm that worked with US President Donald Trump’s campaign.
Since then, Facebook CEO Marc Zuckerberg has testified in front of Congress and the European Parliament to answer questions about Facebook’s handling of user data.
In April Zuckerberg took questions for nearly five hours in a Senate hearing without making any further promises to support new legislation or change how the social network does business, foiling attempts by senators to pin him down.
On Thursday, Facebook blamed its lengthy outages over the past day on a ‘server configuration change’.
Last year, Facebook CEO Marc Zuckerberg testified in front of Congress and the European Parliament to answer questions about Facebook’s handling of user data
‘Yesterday, a server configuration issue made it difficult for people to access our apps and services. We are 100 per cent back up and running and apologize for any inconvenience,’ a Facebook spokesperson said.
The company also said it was considering whether to refund advertisers for lost exposure due to the problems, which internet outage trackers showed affected users in Europe, Japan, North and South America.
‘We are still investigating the overall impact of this issue, including the possibility of refunds for advertisers,’ the spokesperson added.
The outages affected countless users and advertisers worldwide. Some people weren’t able to reach Facebook’s website and apps, including Facebook, Messenger, Instagram and WhatsApp.
Facebook takes tens of millions of dollars of advertising revenue every day.
The length of the outage is another publicity problem for a company already dealing with privacy issues and regulatory probes.
The outages started midday on Wednesday. There were still sporadic problems Thursday morning.
Facebook did not say how many users were affected or why the outage was so long.
In a tweet about 24 hours after the problems began, Facebook apologized and thanked people for their patience. It didn’t elaborate on the server change.
‘Yesterday, as a result of a server configuration change, many people had trouble accessing our apps and services,’ the tweet read.
‘We’ve now resolved the issues and our systems are recovering. We’re very sorry for the inconvenience and appreciate everyone’s patience.’
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