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Signal, the private messaging app endorsed by Edward Snowden, saw user sign-ups soar during the extended downtime of Facebook Inc.’s network of apps and services.

Millions of new users joined the communications app on Monday, Signal said on Twitter.

Facebook suffered a six-hour outage that spanned its WhatsApp messenger, the main social network and photo-sharing app Instagram, shutting out many of its 2.7 billion global users. The situation idled some of the company’s employees and prompted a public apology from the chief technology officer.

Facebook’s loss turned into a gain for other social media. Twitter Inc.’s network stayed online, with Chief Executive Officer Jack Dorsey tweeting his endorsement of Signal as a suitable WhatsApp alternative and amplifying Snowden’s urging of his followers to move away from the Facebook-owned app. 

Facebook blamed a "faulty configuration change" for the outage. The company in a late Monday blog did not specify who executed the configuration change and whether it was planned.

The outage was the second blow to the social media giant in as many days after a whistleblower on Sunday accused the company of repeatedly prioritizing profit over clamping down on hate speech and misinformation.

"To every small and large business, family, and individual who depends on us, I'm sorry," Facebook Chief Technology Officer Mike Schroepfer tweeted, adding that it "may take some time to get to 100%."

Facebook, which is the world's largest seller of online ads after Google, was losing about $545,000 in U.S. ad revenue per hour during the outage, according to estimates from ad measurement firm Standard Media Index.

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