A number of the world's most used and most famous websites have crashed including Amazon, Reddit, the BBC, the New York Times, PayPal, the U.K. Government's sites, and more, as was first reported by the Independent.
The U.K. Government's official website is displaying an "error" message when you try to open it, and Reddit is showing up with empty squares.
UPDATE: JUN. 8, 07:41 AM EST: The websites are back up and running
Within an hour of the websites crashing, most appeared to be back up and running as usual, reported the BBC, one of the sites that had crashed.
Most websites showed a "Error 503 Service Unavailable" message at the time, and were localized in the U.S. and Europe.
The internet issues were connected to the cloud computing provider, Fastly, which provides key services to many websites worldwide.
I saw my whole life falling this morning because I was not able to check an error on the internet.— Thierry Gaetan (@thierrynjike14) June 8, 2021
StackOverflow, GitHub and Reddit were down!
What a scare OMG!! pic.twitter.com/shTcb0nlDi
Fastly published an update of the "Content Delivery Network (CDN) Global Disruption," pointing out that the issue was first caught and started being investigated at 9:58 AM UTC. The issue was identified and being fixed at 10:44 AM UTC, and the fix was applied by 10:57 AM UTC along with a comment from Fastly stating "Customers may experience increased origin load as global services return."
Fastly is typically used to speed up loading times for websites, assist them during heavy traffic, and protect them from "denial of service" attacks, explains the BBC.
I've just made an "Internet behind the scenes", while everything was down: pic.twitter.com/3zLSJpp29q— Ricardo Cruz (@piradoiv) June 8, 2021
CDNs are integral to the internet and how it works smoothly. As was demonstrated today, June 8, when one provider that supports a vast number of popular websites suffers issues, the consequences can be widely felt.
In the media CDNs are very popular as they vastly bring down the loading time of a page. As TechCrunch explains, when you load a web page that's coming from the other side of the world, it can take hundreds of milliseconds for it to pull up. As time goes on, this latency builds, creating a slow loading experience. However, with a CDN the content can start being sent in under 25 milliseconds.
It's clear to see why many media and popular websites would use Fastly's services, but it also goes to show that when one domino piece falls, the others follow suit.
This was a breaking news story, and was updated as information became available.