French broadcaster says victim of Islamist hacking

French broadcaster TV5Monde was working on Thursday to regain control over its 11 channels and websites after an "extremely powerful" cyber attack claimed by the supporters of the Islamic State, its director said.

The attack began around 10 pm local time on Wednesday, said Yves Bigot in an interview on RTL radio, and the hackers knocked out the TV channels and posted material on the broadcaster's Facebook and Twitter feeds.

"We've been able to restore broadcast of one signal on across all of our channels but cannot send out pre-recorded broadcasts nor restart the production of our news shows," he told RTL.

The broadcaster was still trying to figure out how the hackers breached its firewalls, and was working with police and national security authorities.


Central control room at French international station TV5 Monde headquarters
PIERRE VERDY | AFP | Getty Images
Central control room at French international station TV5 Monde headquarters

According to French news agency AFP, the hackers posted documents onTV5 Monde's Facebook page purporting to be the identity cards of relatives of French soldiers involved in anti-Islamic State operations, and threats against the troops.

France is part of the international coalition fighting Islamic State insurgents in Iraq. Culture and Communications Minister Fleur Pellerin expressed her support of the broadcaster and condemned the hack as "a true terrorist act".

TV5Monde is broadcast in over 200 countries globally.

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