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Report: Boise radio stations hit with ransomware, affecting on-air operations

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Listeners to several Boise-area radio stations might have noticed something sounded… strange. No announcers, dead air, missing contests and other issues.

According to Radio & Television Business Report, Townsquare Media stations across the country went down due to an attack of cryptolocker encryption malware. The form of computer virus encrypts hard drives until an affected user pays a ransom to unlock the system.

The trouble started on April Fool’s Day – but wasn’t a wacky radio stunt.

The Boise stations impacted include KSAS/103.5 Kiss FM, KXLT/107.9 Lite FM, KAWO/Wow Country 104.3.

Nationally, stations turned to YouTube for songs, cancelled commercial breaks and had hosts talking for long periods of time, according to R&TBR.

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A report on Townsquare news station KEEL in Shreverport, LA said enginners and IT staff “continue to work on restoring the operating system to working order, though no time for a return to normal operation is known.”

The impact in Boise continued into Tuesday, according to a post on Wow Country’s Facebook page.

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Don Day
Don is the founder and editor of BoiseDev. He is a National Edward R. Murrow Award winner and a Stanford University John S. Knight Fellow.

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