Twitter has faced an extended period of disruption and downtime caused by a cascading bug.
On Thursday 21 June 2012, Twitter suffered a record-breaking outage. This was the first time the site has been down for more than an hour since October 2011. Twitter has revealed that a cascading bug caused the extended downtime, affecting a number of software elements and significantly impacting on Twitter users worldwide.
While the Twitter outage lasted for over an hour, the site has been at least 99.96% and even 99.99% stable and reliable over the past six months. This means that for every 24 hours, users can access the site for 23 hours, 59 minutes and 40 seconds.
A group of hackers took credit for the downtime, claiming that they orchestrated the Twitter outage. UGNazi released a tweet stating: "We just #TangoDown's twitter.com for 40 minutes worldwide!" Also, in an email to Reuters, the hacker group suggested that they performed a distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attack due to the company's support for the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act.
However, Mazen Rawashdeh, vice president of engineering at Twitter, took to the official Twitter blog to confirm that the outage was not down to a successful hack. He stated: "This wasn't due to a hack or our new office or Euro 2012 or GIF avatars, as some have speculated today."
Tom Glass, creative director at theEword, said: "While Twitter did go down for over an hour, the site is known to be reliable most of the time. It is important for Twitter to remain consistent, allowing users to enjoy seamless communication so that they don't lose interest or become jaded by constant outages. "