Visitors attempting to reach some sites received DNS errors, meaning their requests could not reach the websites.
Affected services included Airbnb, UPS, HSBC bank, British Airways and the PlayStation network used for online games.
One popular DNS provider, Akamai, reported “an emerging issue” with its Edge DNS service.
It has now tweeted that the issue has been fixed and “the service is resuming normal operations”.
Internet outage monitoring platform DownDetector had reported thousands of problems from its users across dozens of platforms.
Previously it said the issue had been a “partial outage” – and some users reported being able to access some compromised services in different regions.
As some websites began to appear again for users in Europe and the US, others in Asian nations continued to report problems.
DNS – short for Domain Name System – turns the human-readable web addresses we use, such as bbc.com, into addresses that point to a computer server somewhere online.
Disruptions often mean that a web browser cannot find the content it is looking for.
Other affected services reported by DownDetector included:
- Banks such as Barclays, Lloyds, TSB, and Halifax
- Gaming services including Steam, Call of Duty, and EA
- Streaming services on Channel 4 and ITV
It is the second such widespread outage in two months.
In June, cloud computing provider Fastly had an interrupted service which took down a large number of high-profile websites around the world, including many international newspapers and government websites.
In that case, it later emerged that a settings change by one customer had inadvertently affected the entire infrastructure. (Courtesy BBC)