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Nine confirms cyber attack hits network

Updated: "Cyber hackers have targeted Channel Nine in a massive ransomware attack." All staff to work from home.

Update:

This afternoon in a Nine News update, Melbourne presenter Alica Loxley said, “Cyber hackers have targeted Channel Nine in a massive ransomware attack bringing down its network Australia-wide. No-one has claimed responsibility for the bug but IT experts are working to bring systems back on-line.”

In a note to staff,  Nine confirmed a cyber attack has disrupted live broadcasts out of Nine Sydney (1 Denison).

“Our IT teams are working around the clock to fully restore our systems which have primarily affected our Broadcast and Corporate business units. Publishing and Radio systems continue to be operational,” Vanessa Morley, Director of People & Culture told staff.

While our IT teams work through this issue, we ask that all employees, in all markets, work from home until further notice.”

Anyone working in Nine’s office will experience disruption to the Nine IT network. Emails do not appear to have been impacted.

“We have set up an operational team which includes leaders from across business, whose role is to triage all incoming IT requests.”

Nine News has broadcast a Melbourne-produced news bulletin in Sydney tonight.

The Sydney Morning Herald reports the company may be unable to fully restore systems for some time. Nine News has flown producers to Melbourne for the week and an NRL commentary panel were told to drive to Newcastle to broadcast the football as part of a series of contingencies.

Confirming Karl & Allie will host Today from Sydney on Monday morning.

Earlier:

It’s been a morning of “Technical Difficulties” on several fronts today.

The Today show did not air due to problems at Nine’s new North Sydney headquarters amid speculation as to the reasons behind the problem.

TV Tonight understands problems began early overnight within the network, but were not rectified in time for Today.

The AFL Sunday Footy Show broadcast nationally from Melbourne later in the morning (which had its own minor glitches, presumably unrelated).

Officially the network says, “Nine is responding to technical issues affecting live broadcasting. At this stage we are working through the impacts across the network and will provide an update as we resolve the systems. NRL, 6pm News Bulletins and our evening schedule will proceed as normal.”

Nine Sydney may be forced to broadcast a bulletin from Melbourne tonight. Nine News Brisbane has confirmed a local bulletin as normal.

Meanwhile Insiders on ABC was also subject to its share of tech problems this morning, with videos failing to roll and a crew member glimpsed on set, awkardly left to duck behind the chairs.

This post updates.

27 Responses

  1. No matter how many times businesses are attacked the community never seems to learn the lesson. There should not be any path for critical systems to be accessed over the public internet. Not via direct means, and not indirectly by hopping across other systems.

    Get it right people and this sort of crap ceases to be possible.

  2. Channel 10 in QLD had major issues late on Wednesday night, too. During the replay of The Project, it suddenly switched to footage from Oprah’s interview with Meghan Markle. Then after a few minutes, it jumped to an old episode of The Late Show with Stephen Colbert (from last year), after which it jumped to an episode of Becker (complete with Peach watermark in the corner). Then after about 3 minutes of Becker, it reverted to The Project, only to go through the whole entire cycle again (Oprah, Colbert, Becker)…and then the screen went blank. About 10 minutes later, the whole cycle started again, followed by a blank screen again. It was extremely weird.

  3. When did ransomware become a cyber attack? more like the typical poor security and IT support in businesses in Australia. I’m tired of hearing about cyber attacks, with are just issues caused by users stupidity.

  4. Meanwhile the Australian parliament is also investigating a major technical disruption that resulted in MPs and senators losing email access over the weekend, raising fears of a widespread cyber-attack. Unclear if the two are linked.

  5. Liked the ‘new-look’ Nine News on TCN9 tonight, except for the ugly red slash. Limited captions, no ‘smack-in-the-eye’ transitions and changing backgrounds. Very regional-looking. Quite nice actually. Yes, know it was from Melbourne.

  6. Melbournes 6pm bulletin shown in Sydney tonight.

    How hard would it be for Nine to get Michael or Tracy from Perth in a little early and do a Sydney bulletin? After all our late news comes as a national bulletin many nights a week from Perth.

    Even during the Lindt siege, we had Susannah from Perth host a late night Seven News bulletin when the Sydney news room was closed. Sure she went national, but the story was 100% a Sydney one.

  7. This is a massive problem in Australia, just last week Eastern Health in Melbourne which runs major hospitals including Box Hill had a such a massive attack against them they couldn’t even send or receive emails let alone open people’s health records.

    So i can’t say i’m surprised about this attack on Nine, although hackers aren’t really gaining information as such, perhaps their plan is to take over the broadcasting?? A few scenes from Get Smart come to mind there Not sure how much $ our govt is putting into cyber security measures compared to other western nations?

  8. Of course they’re going to stick with technical issues. Determining if something like this is an actual cyber attack takes time and resources, and you can’t really attribute an attack to a particular actor or entity, because they’ve gotten good at covering their tracks.

  9. It is a national issue but causing more headaches in Sydney due to increased automation. Guessing Alicia Loxley may be presenting Sydney’s news tonight and if the issue isn’t rectified today Karl and Ally may have to host from Melbourne. Not sure this will be a quick fix.

  10. I hear that someone dressed in a cow costume was seen in the control room

    Technical problems on Nine aren’t the same without a Pete Smith voice-over apologising for the break in transmission and then introducing an episode of Jake And The Fatman

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