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

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In addition to Facebook, irate users noted that the outage likewise affected Instagram and WhatsApp.

Police in Bothell, Washington had to make a similar plea on their Twitter account.

Facebook experienced their longest ever outage on Thursday.

The company blamed a change it had made to its system for the outage, saying that the issue had been resolved and that its systems were recovering.

Facebook shares were trading down 1.7 percent early Thursday afternoon, at $170.50.

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Facebook said Thursday it had fixed the technical issue that led to a widespread outage across its services for nearly 24 hours on Wednesday. Reuters was not immediately able to verify those claims and the company declined to comment beyond the statement on resumption of services.

FILE PHOTO: Silhouettes of mobile users are seen next to a screen projection of Facebook logo in this picture illustration taken March 28, 2018. Facebook product director Rob Leathern said on Twitter that people were also unable to access the social network's ad interfaces, which may exacerbate any lost revenue from the outage.

While the outage continued, The New York Times reported that United States prosecutors had launched a criminal investigation into the social network's practice of sharing users' data with companies without letting them know.

The social network's handling of user data has been a flashpoint for controversy since it admitted a year ago that Cambridge Analytica, a political consultancy which did work for Donald Trump's 2016 election campaign, used an app that may have hijacked the private details of 87 million users. Facebook said it was working to resolve the issue but didn't announce the fix until Thursday. The federal investigation is the latest bad news coming from the company's data privacy scandals.

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