The technical problems began earlier this week while regular maintenance was being performed on the system, diminishing the possibility the disruption was caused by a malicious attack, deputy spokesperson Marie Harf noted. Technical experts are investigating the root cause.
"This was a technical issue, and again, we are working to correct it and should be fully operational again soon. We're operating at a little bit of limited capacity right now, though, so we're trying not to overload the system."
The CCD is used by the State Department to process passports and visas. "The issue is worldwide," Harf said, and has caused a backlog of visa requests.
When asked how long it will take to work through the backlog of application requests, Harf asked for patience and joked "don't everyone go apply."
For now, she said, the State Department does not know how long it will take to return the CCD to full operational capacity or how long it will take to work through the backlog.