By Joel Hruska

At 11:39 AM EST this morning, someone at Facebook updated the company’s BGP (Border Gateway Protocol) records and knocked Facebook, Instagram, Oculus, and WhatsApp offline in the process. As of this writing, all three services remain offline.

BGP is the protocol large organizations like ISPs use for sharing information on traffic routing. If a user in Germany wants to access information on an Australian server, that data request is going to move through multiple large networks. BGP is fundamental to that process and to the function of the internet itself. When Facebook updated records with bad information it effectively deplatformed itself and its associated properties.

This isn’t just a problem for everyone who can’t access Facebook, WhatsApp, or Instagram. It’s reportedly causing headaches for Facebook employees as well: