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What caused Facebook, Instagram to go dark?

The hours-long outage of the social media platforms worried some Valley residents who depend on the apps to make a living.

PHOENIX — Facebook and its Instagram and WhatsApp platforms are back online after a massive global outage plunged the services and the businesses and people who rely on them into chaos for hours. 

Facebook said late Monday that “the root cause of this outage was a faulty configuration change” and that there is “no evidence that user data was compromised as a result” of the outage.  

Ken Colburn of Data Doctors said the outage was "pretty unusual" considering how long it lasted. 

"When you get a major outage like this," Colburn said. "That means there is an infrastructure issue."

There appeared to be a routing issue, he added, because search engines did not know how to take users to the Facebook website. 

The outage worried some Valley residents like Andrea Blake, who runs Southwest Sampler, an Instagram account that showcases Arizona's travel destinations.

"At first, I was so relieved," Blake said about the outage. "It was nice to be in the moment. Be myself." 

But then Blake began to panic about how long the blackout might last and whether it might interfere with her livelihood in the near future. 

If the outages become a weekly or daily occurrence, she said, then it could have major ramifications on her business. 

"It can be a loss of revenue for so many projects I have been working on for months," Blake said. "I could be losing rent for that month."

Facebook apologized and said it is working to understand more about the cause, which began around 11:40 a.m. Eastern Monday. 

The company is going through a major crisis after the whistleblower who was the source of The Wall Street Journal’s series of stories exposing the company’s awareness of internal research into the negative effects of its products went public on CBS's “60 Minutes” program Sunday.

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