Some people tweeted that it was the apocalypse, and some said it was the beginning of the end, but BBC only said it was a “technical issue” and was working to resolve the issue – when its website, the BBC iPlayer or streaming video service, apps, and other digital services went offline for a period of time on Thursday morning across the entire bbc.co.uk domain.
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According to The Guardian, the BBC website displayed “Error 500 – Internal Error” code, and several of its users started to complain about the service outage. The iPlayer video streaming service was also disrupted and apps and internet services were down.
Users started noticing the hitch as early as 7 am on Thursday, but the international news organization was able to fully restore the broken services by 11 am. Before this, a few services loaded shortly before going down again while others just went completely offline.
Sources from within BBC said the problem was due to a distributed denial of service attack, but the BBC press office only disclosed it was a technical problem. Nothing beyond this was revealed. Sources also revealed the BBC radio and TV were unaffected by the unexpected hitch, but several digital services were simply not just available during the outage.
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The last time the BBC suffered such a website breakdown was in 2011; but the news organization revealed in 2012 that the 2011 outage was actually due to a cyber attack. And in 2014, its iPlayer service was also offline for nearly a weekend as a result of some database fault.