Signal and Telegram messaging apps say they gained millions of new users when Facebook crashed

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The loss of one social media giant is the gain of another social media business.

Or two companies in this case: Signal and Telegram reported that millions of new users were coming to their messaging apps during Facebook’s roughly six-hour outage on Monday.

The Facebook FB,
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crash took not only Facebook offline, but also its Instagram photo sharing app and WhatsApp encrypted messaging app. This sent users looking for other ways to communicate with improved privacy.

Facebook Messenger offers end-to-end encryption – although it’s currently an activation feature – and WhatsApp’s default is end-to-end encryption. Signal’s messages and calls are also automatically end-to-end encrypted, while Telegram offers end-to-end encrypted messaging through its “secret chats”.

Read more: Facebook’s very, very bad day: Services darken, stocks plunge following whistleblower revelations

“Signups are up on Signal (welcome everyone!),” Signal said on Twitter TWTR,
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during the outage, adding that “millions of new people have joined Signal today.” The company did not share the exact number of new users.

Telegram founder and CEO Pavel Durov shared on his public channel Telegram that on Monday the app “welcomed more than 70 million refugees from other platforms in one day.”

But both apps said they encountered some minor technical difficulties amid the influx of new users on Monday.

“Our voicemail and calls are up and running, but some people don’t see all of their contacts showing up on Signal. We are working hard to resolve this issue, ”Signal tweeted.

Telegram “has continued to perform flawlessly for the vast majority” of its users, Durov told his channel. But “some users in the Americas may have experienced slower speeds than usual, as millions of users from those continents rushed to sign up for Telegram at the same time.”

Still, these issues were nothing compared to what Facebook was facing.

Related: Facebook Outage, By The Numbers: Biggest Ever Outage Could Cost Millions

Facebook said in a statement that the underlying cause of the outage had disrupted many internal tools and systems at the company, making it even more difficult to attempt to resolve the issue.

“Our engineering teams have learned that configuration changes on the backbone routers that coordinate network traffic between our data centers caused issues that interrupted that communication. This disruption in network traffic has had a cascading effect on the way our data centers communicate, shutting down our services, ”Santosh Janardhan, Facebook vice president of engineering and infrastructure, said in a statement.

Monday’s outage cost the company an average of $ 163,565 in revenue per minute, or about $ 60 million based on more than six hours of downtime, MarketWatch estimates.


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