Yesterday morning, Facebook suffered a major interruption to its service. This was assumed by the media to be the result of a Denial of Service attack, and widely reported as such. But who was really to blame?
The world’s most popular web site was offline globally for up to an hour on Tuesday morning, from around 06:10 GMT. Other services which rely on Facebook, such as Instagram and Tinder, were also affected.
It was assumed Facebook were the victim of a Denial of Service attack. And shortly after the outage began, high-profile hacking group Lizard Squad posted a brief message on Twitter. It simply mentioned the names of five services which were currently suffering problems, but many interpreted it as Lizard Squad taking credit for the attack.
But Facebook now say that the problem was entirely self-inflicted and the result of configuration changes its engineers made to its systems.
In a statement Facebook said, “Earlier this evening many people had trouble accessing Facebook and Instagram. This was not the result of a third party attack but instead occurred after we introduced a change that affected our configuration systems. We moved quickly to fix the problem, and both services are back to 100% for everyone.”
As is often the case, we may never know for certain what caused the problem. Although it is highly embarrassing for Facebook to admit that the problem was self-inflicted, victims of attacks have often been reluctant to admit that an attack took place fearing that it would not only cause greater embarrassment, but encourage future attacks.