Nine Cyber Attack Could Impact Operations For Weeks
A devastating cyber attack on the Nine Network which brought live broadcasting to a grinding halt could impact the company’s operations for weeks to come.
The ransomware attack stopped Nine’s live broadcasts on Sunday morning and interrupted production of its associated publications The Australian Financial Review, The Age, and The Sydney Morning Herald.
Nine’s fully automated IT system was inaccessible during the hack, meaning emails, internet access and broadcasts were shut down and the network was forced to air its Melbourne broadcast across the major cities.
Melbourne’s facility was not affected as its system is not automated.
According to the AFR, the attack could impact Nine’s operations for weeks to come as systems are repaired.
Staff have been told they should work from home ‘indefinitely’ as Nine’s chief information and technology officer Damian Cronan and his team conduct a forensic analysis.
Cronan said the source of the attack as been isolated and they are investigating just how far-reaching the hack’s implications are.
“Our focus in the first 24 hours was on containment and we are confident our technology teams have isolated the attacker and the specific destructive activity that was initiated,” Cronan said.
Nine employees were told to check their laptops for a file named Recovery_Instructions.html, which is the calling card of a notorious ransomware named Medusa.
According to reports, Medusa does not steal data but instead cripples systems in order to demand a ransom.
Federal Parliament was also the target of a cyber attack over the weekend after a technical disruption caused MPs and senators to lose access to emails.
Assistant Defence Minister Andrew Hastie said the issue was linked to an external provider and all connections linked to the government system were shut off immediately in response.
“The government acted quickly, and we have the best minds in the world working to ensure Australia remains the most secure place to operate online,” he said in a statement on Sunday night.