ABS-CBN

Hackers attack ABS-CBN News’ YouTube channels

Camille Elemia
Hackers attack ABS-CBN News’ YouTube channels
'The investigation on the incident continues as we also implement measures to prevent this from happening again,' ABS-CBN says
Hackers attack ABS-CBN News’ YouTube channels

It’s a confirmed case of hacking.

For at least 9 hours on Tuesday, November 3, the YouTube channels of ABS-CBN News and the ABS-CBN News Channel (ANC) were inaccessible to the public.

“The two news channels were temporarily suspended beginning 6:30 am this morning after a hacking incident,” ABS-CBN said in a statement.

“The investigation on the incident continues as we also implement measures to prevent this from happening again,” the company said.

ABS-CBN News has 10.6 million subscribers, while ANC has over 300,000 subscribers.

The two channels were restored at 3:58 pm.

Account security

In a separate statement, YouTube said it takes “account security very seriously” and notifies account owners when suspicious activity is detected.

Prior to the takedown of the two channels, they posted a livestream of Ripple, a San Francisco-based cryptocurrency company.

In April, Ripple filed a lawsuit against YouTube for failing to stop scammers from damaging Ripple’s brand and reputation.

According to a Fortune article, the complaint cited instances “where hackers took over the channels of legitimate creators and replaced their videos with ones advertising Ripple-related scams.”

The same article said that complaint accused YouTube of “failing to adequately restrict the spread of such videos, and even profits from them by letting the scammers pay to promote them.” 

Not the first

This was not the first time ABS-CBN’s digital assets encountered problems.

On September 3, its news website was temporarily down in the Philippines. It was, however, found accessible via Safari and gadgets with VPN.

At the time, ABS-CBN said it detected a “technical problem” and was looking into the matter.

ABS-CBN was forced to go off-air early May due to a government-backed shutdown.

The company has then shifted its focus on its digital and cable businesses. (READ: FAST FACTS: Other businesses of ABS-CBN)

– Rappler.com

Camille Elemia

Camille Elemia is Rappler's lead reporter for media, disinformation issues, and democracy. She won an ILO award in 2017. She received the prestigious Fulbright-Hubert Humphrey fellowship in 2019, allowing her to further study media and politics in the US. Email camille.elemia@rappler.com