Foreign Cyber Attack Disrupted Printing of Major Newspapers This Weekend

Jeannie Matthews
December 31, 2018

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.

A devastating and allegedly foreign cyberattack hindered newspaper distribution for several major USA outlets Saturday, according to news reports.

Malware was first detected on Thursday by Tribune Publishing, the owner of some of the affected titles, but unsuccessful attempts at quarantining meant that there was disruption well into Saturday. These are both printed at the Los Angeles Times facility.

Newspaper administrators reported the problem to the Federal Bureau of Investigation on Friday, the U-T said.

"We apologize to our customers for this inconvenience. News and all of our regular features are available online". The technology housed at the Los Angeles Times has been able to make some major strides in fixing the problem as it now stands.

The cyber attack appeared to originate outside the United States, the Los Angeles Times reported, citing a source with knowledge of the situation.

The print editions of the Chicago Tribune, Lake County News-Sun, Post-Tribune, Hartford Courant, Baltimore Sun, Capital Gazette, and Carroll County Times were published Saturday without paid death notices and classified ads, according to the Chicago Tribune, Hartford Courant, and Baltimore Sun. The interference disrupted the printing process, causing the papers to be published late.

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Teams had tried to quarantine the malware, but it apparently "reinfected" systems linked to news production and printing.

"We are trying to do work-arounds so we can get pages out". "Thank you for your patience and support as we respond to this ongoing matter".

It wasn't immediately clear whether law enforcement officials had been contacted.

The virus affected Tribune Publishing papers across the country.

The problem caused widespread confusion, the paper noted, because subscribers who called the newspaper's offices on Saturday morning were "told, incorrectly, that the numbers were not in service".

All Tribune Publishing newspapers were impacted to some degree by the cyber-attack.

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