Economy

Cyber-attack disrupts distribution of multiple USA newspapers

Cyber-attack disrupts distribution of multiple USA newspapers

The virus also affected the paper's digital replica online.

In Southern California, former Tribune Publishing newspapers the Los Angeles Times and San Diego Union-Tribune were impacted by the same malware, with many home delivery customers experiencing delays and some not receiving the paper at all.

The Sun Sentinel published a note to its readers on its website early Saturday morning promising delivery of Saturday's paper, including coupons and advertising sections, together with Sunday's editions.

In a note posted on the Union-Tribune's website, Light described a computer virus that affected the computer systems for Tribune Publishing, the media company that used to own the Union-Tribune and now owns multiple newspapers including the Chicago Tribune, The Baltimore Sun and the Orlando Sentinel.

The Times said the issue - which apparently began late Thursday night - was first detected Friday.

Investigators at the Federal Bureau of Investigations were not immediately available for comment.

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It ultimately caused delays in production and delivery of the papers on Saturday, a source familiar with the situation told the Los Angeles Times, one of the publications targeted by the hack.

"A computer virus infected the business systems associated with the printing process. Thank you for your patience and support as we respond to this ongoing matter", The Times said in a statement.

The attack is believed to have come from outside the USA, the LA Times said.

The San Diego Union-Tribune is said to have been hit particularly hard, as 85 to 90 percent of its Saturday edition didn't reach its subscribers. When subscribers tried to call the paper, they were erroneously told that the numbers were out of service.

Malware has, over time, become more sophisticated and coordinated, involving more planning by networks of hackers who infiltrate a system over time, she said. "When people think of malware, the impression may be, 'It's a little program that runs on my computer, '" Dixon said.


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