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Facebook crash shakes up local online businesses

WHEN FACEBOOK crashed on Monday night, it had an unexpectedly bad effect on people and businesses in Thailand.

Apisilp Trunganont, president of the Thai Webmaster Association, said that though this could happen to any website, Facebook's infrastructure was more stable than most and, hence, should not have crashed so easily.

As for users who spend a lot of time on Facebook, they might have been irritated when they found themselves unable to post, comment or press the "like" button for a while.

"But the good thing is that it was not down for very long and only affected some features. It did not affect those who just read their timeline. However, shops that rely on Facebook should have a plan B should this happen again," Apisilp said.

Pawoot Pongvitayapanu, president of Thailand's e-Commerce Association, explained that Facebook users were unable to access some 20 per cent of Thai websites on Monday night, which meant that businesses could not post any new products or services, and potential customers could not press "like" for about an hour.

This resulted in a rather large impact considering there are some 700 million to 1.2 billion users who log on to Facebook everyday, he said.

"The impact was worsened as it happened between 10pm and 11pm - peak time for Facebook users," Pawoot said.

Hence, he said, businesses should not only rely on Facebook for links to their websites, but also consider setting up their own Web log-in systems in order to reduce risks.

"Facebook's latest crash has also had an impact on the networking site's image and stability, and also affected people's confidence in the management of cloud computing," Pawoot said.

Art Wichiencharoen, senior vice president of Kasikorn Bank, said the crash did not have much of an impact on his bank, as Facebook is not linked to its online or mobile banking services.

"It is only one of the many channels we use to send transaction alerts," Art said.

However, he added that the KBANK Live Facebook fanpage, which is used for online activities and information, might have been affected by the crash. "But we did not hear about any adverse impacts," he said, adding that the crash should not have an effect on people's confidence in online services, especially in the financial and banking sector, as Facebook is only one of the many service providers.

"Now, ATM machines cannot crash. Since the Internet and mobile banking are starting to play a bigger role, we need to ensure our infrastructure is completely stable so our online services have 100-per-cent availability," Art said.




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