Live streaming disruption

Live streaming disruption; popular channel Nine TV under cyber attack

Cyber-attacks against established and financially sound organizations are finding hype these days. They either demand a high amount of ransom or just interrupt the network and damage the important files. They mainly get into the target’s server or network through unpatched vulnerabilities. Vulnerability is an important criterion while looking on to cyber-attacks. The threat actors conduct a thorough research on the operating system, servers and networks used by the target. They will scan them using their hi-tech tools to find an open or unidentified vulnerability. Through this loop hole, they lurk into the systems of the target. It is never an easy task. It takes time and effort.

Recently a cyber-attack has been reported which disorganized the live broadcast of the famous Australian channel Nine TV network. This attempt raised questions about the nation’s security among the common people. If highly secured institutions like Nine TV has been take down, then how are the government and authorities going to protect the security of the people. Nation’s cyber security protocol was put at stake.

The officials and the employees of Nine TV said that one fine morning they were not able to air the live contents, including Weekend Today.

There are doubts about the cyber-attack whether it was an attempt of sabotage by the hackers or if there are any hidden presence of foreign nations to launch cyber war.

In olden days, if there is any problem between two nations, they will involve in war to prove their worth. Gradually as time passed, every nation deployed their own armed forces to fight against each other. But today it is an era of bio-wars and cyber wars. Compared to physical combat, these methods are much easier and would cause intense damage. Every countries and nations around the world are now preparing themselves to launch or defend a cyber-attack. Recently, India has faced a severe cyber-attack from China that interrupted the power grid systems and caused economic and technical damage.

The attack against Nine TV was taken into serious consideration. The Australian parliament issued orders to investigate about the chances of cyber-attack in Canberra on March 28, 2021.

As a precaution, the access to confidential files, IT and mails of the Australian Parliament House has been blocked. This was done as per the orders of Assistant Defence Minister, Andrew Hastie. He took the decision to protect the external provider and causing further issues. He also added that after the attack, the government acted quickly to ensure no more further damages are done to the organization. The officials are also trying to find out the link between the cyber hacks at the Nine TV and the parliament outrage.

On a broad perspective, the Australian government, corporates and other major institutions has been under the string of cyber-attacks for the last 5 years. Based on this, the Prime Minister of Australia, Scott Morison predicted cyber espionage from the foreign nations using sophisticated technology. Australia is building their cyber security stronger in order to defend these attacks.

About two years back, in 2019 some of the political parties and the Australian parliament were intensely hit by a cyber-attack. Some of the suspected nations include Russia, China, Iran and North Korea. These are the nations which have difference in opinions with Australia.

How did the channel respond?

The owners of the channel, The Sydney Morning Herald and the Age Newspapers reported that not much of the datas were affected. Mainly the publishing and radio divisions were left unharmed.

When the attack was launched during the morning live show, the employees felt it as a technical glitch and they reported that the live which ran 7:00 to 13:00 local time has been cancelled due to technical issues. Along with the live broadcast, the official site was also affected.

The channel assured that the IT teams are working on their networks to restore them and bring back the corporate business unit and the radio will come to the operational terms very soon, the company said.

The cyber security researchers claimed that Australia has reported around 60,000 cases of cyber security breaches and technically in every 10 minutes one cyber-crime happens.

After fixing all the patches, the TV channel was able to air the programs by Monday.

What are the possible ways to prevent cyber-attacks?

  • Educate your employees about the cyber security principles.
  • Install a strong anti-virus or anti-spyware software.
  • Use a protected firewall.
  • Do regular back-ups.
  • Eliminate multiple accesses to sensitive information.
  • Secure your Wi-Fi networks.
  • Change passwords constantly.

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