FuboTV Says It Was Hit by Criminal Cyber Attack During France/Morocco World Cup Soccer Match

During the Dec. 14 Qatar World Cup semifinal soccer match between France and Morocco, FuboTV said many of its 1.43 million subscribers could not access their accounts to stream the game, which was won by France. The online sports TV streaming platform said the problem had nothing to do with bandwidth or technology issues.

“We were instead the target of a criminal cyber attack,” the company said in a statement.

Fubo said it has reported the incident to law enforcement and have engaged Mandiant, an industry incident response firm, to assist with the continuing investigation and response.

“Our primary focus currently is on ensuring that the incident is fully contained and that there is no threat of further disruption for any of our customers,” the company said, adding that it was working with outside cybersecurity experts to prevent any similar incident from recurring in the future.

Morocco plays Croatia in the third-place match on Dec. 17, while France plays Argentina in the championship match on Dec. 18.

Sinclair Touts Q3 Tennis Channel Streaming Service Launches, Ransomware Issues

Sinclair Broadcast Group Nov. 3 disclosed it launched a subscription streaming service edition of the Tennis Channel in the United Kingdom in September, in addition to an ad-supported version in India.

Baltimore-based Sinclair owns and operates myriad television station groups across the country, in addition to regional sports networks with the New York Yankees (and Amazon), and separately with the Chicago Cubs.

In July, Sinclair and Bally’s unveiled a plan to rebrand Sinclair’s 21 regional sports networks under the Bally’s name that would include a monthly subscription streaming video platform.

“Our focus remains on growth opportunities in the broadcast, news and sports areas … [and] the implementation of gamification elements across our platforms, the ramping up of activities around a ‘Direct to Consumer’ product … will all be key initiatives as we move into the next year,” CEO Chris Ripley said in a statement.

Sinclair said it continues to investigate an October ransomware attack that incapacitated select servers, workstations, office and operational networks. The company added that data was also stolen from its network.

In a statement, Sinclair said legal counsel, a cybersecurity forensic firm, and other incident response professionals have been engaged, and the appropriate law enforcement and other governmental agencies notified.

“The investigation into the incident remains ongoing,” the company said. “While [we have] taken significant steps to contain the incident, the event has not yet been fully resolved, and certain disruptions to its business and operations remain.”

Nielsen Ups Web Data Tracking Prowess, Safeguards

Nielsen July 27 announced it would no longer use third-party cookies to monitor users’ digital content consumption. With its new approach to measuring authenticated and unauthenticated web traffic, Nielsen said it would become the leading platform to validate first-party server data with real consumer behavior.

Third-party cookie deprecation is fundamentally changing the advertising ecosystem, according to Nielsen. Combined with the deterioration of other digital identifiers, there’s greater emphasis on first-party data, which provides a good understanding of online users’ unique habits, from website browsing to app usage. As a result, every publisher and brand has been challenged to develop its own first-party data strategy and leverage other data signals when identity is not directly attributable to an ad impression.

The transition comes just days after the legacy TV rating firm said it suffered an “unexpected disruption” to its data tracking it said was caused by a cyber attack.

“If the industry has learned anything since the rise of cookies, it’s that digital media measurement must remain scalable, flexible and useful,” Mainak Mazumdar, chief data officer at Nielsen, said in a statement. “Our new approach to measuring authenticated and unauthenticated digital traffic will enable us to scale across channels and platforms to ensure a comprehensive view of success and uncover areas for optimization.”

The market for digital distribution and advertising evolves, Nielsen contends digital traffic will ultimately move into two distinct categories for measurement following the deprecation of digital identifiers:

  • Authenticated: Traffic with identifiers on properties which have logged in environments or consented devices. To measure authenticated traffic, Nielsen will leverage all available identifiers and first-party data from participating clients, such as hashed email addresses, Unified ID 2.0 and select, verified self-reported demographic labels. This will ensure interoperability in the ad ecosystem, including with walled gardens, and simplify measurement for clients by reducing reliance on third parties.
  • Unauthenticated: Logged out traffic or traffic on properties that do not have logged in environments or where no alternative identifiers can be provided. To measure anonymous traffic, Nielsen has developed a machine learning technique with  additional contextual data signals including time, browser, content and device information.

 

As Nielsen continues to evolve its technologies and methodologies for independent measurement of audiences and outcomes, it has identified a five-pronged approach to measuring authenticated and unauthenticated web traffic.

  1. Interoperability: As digital identity continues to fragment, Nielsen’s use of a diverse set of identifiers and first-party data provided by clients, such as hashed email addresses, Unified ID 2.0 and verified self-reported demographic labels  will ensure interoperability in the ad ecosystem to manage future changes with agility and to simplify measurement for clients.
  2. Comparability: In the absence of alternate identifiers or first-party data, Nielsen claims it is able to provide comparability with its common measurement framework and data science across platforms and publishers. For instance, Nielsen will use time, browser and other metadata within its people-based panel to determine demographic assignments for unauthenticated audience and outcomes measurement.
  3. Persistence: Nielsen is transitioning from an identity backbone to so-called “stable identifiers” that remain consistent over time, offering measurement that is tied to actual people and households.
  4. Confidentiality: With new, confidential computing technologies, Nielsen hopes to bring more assurances of data confidentiality to audience and outcomes measurement. Proprietary confidential computing technologies enable Nielsen to run a wide variety of analytics applications, delivering faster and more flexible custom analytics capabilities to clients.

McAfee: Gamers Worried About Cybersecurity

A new survey by Cybersecurity company McAfee shows three-quarters of PC gamers are worried about the security of gaming in the future. Nearly 64% have experienced or know someone who has been directly affected by a cyberattack.

The “Game Over: The Future of Gaming Security” found that while gamers profess to exhibit good cybersecurity habits, 55% of gamers reuse passwords across accounts for online services, and the average gamer has experienced almost five cyberattacks.

“We found that gamers are most certainly concerned about cybersecurity, however they tend to engage in poor security habits,” said Gary Davis, chief consumer security evangelist at McAfee. “As PC gaming continues to grow in popularity, it’s important for gamers to take steps to help keep their device and personal information protected.”

Among security measures taken to secure their PCS, 83% of gamers have installed antivirus software. McAfee recommends gamers use a firewall to protect their system, don’t click on messages from unknown users, and use unique passwords for all online accounts.