Dish Network services remain offline today following suspected cyberattack
Satellite television provider Dish Network Corp. continues to suffer a wide range of outages today after it was hit by a suspected cyberattack.
The outage was first detected on Thursday morning, when Dish customers started to complain that they couldn’t access IPTV services with Dish credentials and could not log into their online accounts to pay bills. Engadget reported that the outage appears to affect nearly every part of the company, including Boost Mobile, a prepaid wireless carrier acquired by Dish in 2020. Dish’s call centers were also reported to be unreachable.
As of Sunday afternoon EST, many of those services remain offline, according to the tracking site Downdetector. As of the time of writing, the main dish.com site currently reads, “we are experiencing a system issue that our teams are working hard to resolve.” Customers seeking support are directed to a site that provides some basic troubleshooting information and nothing more.
Dish has yet to make an official statement. Aside from the vague statements on its website, the closest to anything direct from the company was a reply from the Dish customer representative on Twitter calling the outage an “internal systems issue.”
An internal systems issue is impacting some of our customer service operations. We’re sorry for the inconvenience. We’ll be able to help you out as soon as our systems are back up. Thank you for your patience.
— DISH Answers (@dish_answers) February 24, 2023
If it quacks like a duck and looks like a duck when it comes to a site outage, the duck is typically a cybersecurity attack and likely ransomware, but no one knows for sure, including most Dish staff.
In an internal email reported by The Verge, Dish described the outage as related to “large VPN issues.” However, a Dish Network employee told Bleeping Computer that a cyberattack had hit Dish and that according to their manager, the incident “was caused by an outside bad actor, a known threat agent” and that the company is unsure how the person or group gained access.
Another employee also told Bleeping Computer that staff was seeing “blank icons” on their desktops, a typical occurrence after ransomware has encrypted files.
Until such time Dish makes an official statement or filing with a regulatory body, it’s speculation to a point, but given that the company has been down nearly four days and counting, whatever it is has done significant damage.