The Weather Channel goes offline after ransomware attack

The ransomware took The Weather Channel’s live transmission offline for almost an hour.

Another day, another ransomware attack; this time The Weather Channel suffered a powerful ransomware attack forcing its live TV telecast to go offline for 90 minutes.

See: WannaCry hero MalwareTech pleads guilty to writing banking malware

The ransomware attack took place on April 18th at around 6:00 am, local time, when the channel was telecasting its live morning show “AMHQ.” The Weather Channel was then forced to replace its live transmission with advertisements and recorded footage of “Heavy Rescue: 401,” a Canadian reality TV show that follows the operations of multiple heavy vehicle rescue and recovery towing companies.

Fighting ransomware attack with “backup mechanisms”

However, at 7:39 a.m. ET, The Weather Channel’s transmission was back online and a few minutes the channel announced it suffered a “malicious software attack on the network” that disrupted their live morning show.

In a tweet, The Weather Channel explained that “it was able to restore live programming quickly through backup mechanisms” and that Federal investigations are in progress.

It is unclear who was behind the ransomware attack or how much ransom was demanded by attackers. Usually, cybercriminals demand money in Bitcoin or Monero to keep the transaction and their identity untraceable.

Backup your data 

The importance of backing up your data is crucial in any ransomware attack. In the past, there have been several incidents in which businesses had to lose a large sum of money and important data to ransomware attacks.

In July 2017, KQED, a prominent public TV and radio station in San Francisco suffered massive ransomware attack wiping out their pre-recorded segments. The attack and its incurred damages were so severe that according to KQED’s senior editor their station was “bombed back to 20 years ago, technology-wise.”

See: A city in Texas is using paper after suffering ransomware attack

In another incident, Cocker Hill’s Police Department in Dallas, Texas had their computer system infected in a ransomware attack. The department had to lose digital evidence from the past few years.

If you are on the Internet you can be next victim of ransomware, therefore, follow this guide to protect yourself from ransomware and malware attacks. Also, keep your system up to date and run a scan on a daily basis with any of these top anti-virus programs. Stay safe online!

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