The FBI reports that in 2017, victim losses from cybercrime were higher than 1.7 billion dollars. So in March 2019 when Down Detector began reporting Facebook outages and the hashtag of #FacebookDown started trending.
It was a historical outage for Facebook, with the record-setting outage lasting all day. People from all walks of life began to wonder if something nefarious was in the works.
Read on to discover if the historical Facebook outage this week was a cyber attack or a "server configuration change."
Impact of Facebook Being Down
On a personal level, the average user could be upset about a Facebook outage if they were waiting for news about a baby on the way, surgery in the family, or even just a virtual hug from a friend if they were having a bad day.
At the same time, people selling personal items on Facebook marketplace might be wondering if they really want to have a picture of their home floating around virtual cyberspace when Facebook goes down for a full day.
At the monetary level, advertisers collectively could lose millions of dollars in one day. A Facebook outage could be worse than a stock market crash.
In 2016 when Facebook went down, sites such as The New York Times, Yahoo, Uber, and CNN experienced trouble dealing with their sensitive information.
So when it happens, it's serious, and users have a right to know what happened.
Businesses worried about this happening to their company want to ensure they invest in managed IT services that will take care of their every blip and wrinkle in the system without you ever having to worry about it.
What Does Facebook Say?
Facebook's lead on video content and products was at a Facebook conference in Austin when the outage happened. He laughed it off and referred to it as a "technical difficulties day" for Facebook.
Facebook made a statement through the platform of one of their competitors: Twitter. But what else can you do when Facebook is down?
Facebook said that they were aware of the problem, and "working to resolve the issue as soon as possible."
Facebook also said they could "confirm" it was not a DDoS attack, a common form of cyber attack formally known as distributed denial of service attack.
Facebook didn't say anything else about it, such as how many users were affected or when the problem would be resolved. If you are worried about it happening to you, use this guide to find out if you have been hacked.
Do Users Think it Was a Cyber Attack?
When Facebook was down for the whole day, with very little explanation, people from all walks of life were wondering if it was a cyber attack.
Facebook denied this claim, but Dr. Eiza of the University of Central Lancashire said it was impossible to rule out the possibility of a malicious attack. He expects more information will come out in the coming weeks on the matter and found Facebook too "vague" on the matter, furthering his suspicion this was a cyber attack.
He also warned that users are still at risk on both Facebook and Instagram.
We may never know what happened, and can only protect ourselves from it impacting us individually in the future.
We may never know what really happened when Facebook went down for a full day in a historical outage. The impact of this outage impacts everyone from everyday users to millions of advertisers wondering what their millions of advertising dollars are doing.
In this digital era, it seems that this is the cost of doing business, as cybercrime is estimated to be the most significant threat to businesses today. It is estimated that there are approximately 158, 727 cyber attacks per hour in America and that cyber attacks will cost the world $6 trillion by 2021.
It's happening right now to possibly hundreds of people or businesses. Use Facebook's security features to protect yourself from it happening to you.
Empower yourself with information as well, and use these 5 tips to protect yourself from a data breach or any kind of cyber attack.