The internet was hit by a massive outage yesterday which took down dozens of major websites including Twitch, Reddit, Spotify, and many others. The cause of this outage largely remained unknown at that time, but now it is out in the open.
The issue was reportedly caused by disruption at the cloud computing service provider Fastly, which provides its services to many websites. Fastly is a content delivery network (CDN) that maintains a network of servers that quickly transfer content from websites to users.
Fastly says that it identified a “service configuration that triggered disruptions” around the globe on Tuesday. It took two hours to identify the problem and implement a fix for it, which recovered many of the websites that went down from the disruption.
This shows how dependant, centralized, and susceptible the infrastructure of the internet is and how much it comes from a company that most of us have not even heard of. This is the third time in a year that the internet has suffered from an outage due to a cloud computing service provider facing a disruption.
However, there is no reason to believe that this blackout was the result of a cyberattack. Though the news does come at a time where cyberattacks are becoming more common with recent examples being the disruption at the global meat supply and a major oil pipeline in the US.