Fox News’ home page was wracked by a bizarre series of errors on Tuesday afternoon that prompted concern that they might have been hacked, but the network has denied those claims, attributing the errors to internal issues.
Jeff Misenti, Fox News’ chief digital officer, released a statement shortly after, denying that the site was hacked. “During routine website maintenance, a home page prototype was accidently [sic] moved to the actual site,” Misenti said. "As with any mistake in testing, engineers noticed the error and quickly brought the site back to its normal function.”
On Tuesday, FoxNews.com was defaced with a number of fake reports and nonsensical headlines, including a programming alert warning of an impending Zombie day that would “Bring Out the Living Dead.” Other erroneous stories included a live feed on the home page of a highway pileup, captioned, “WEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE. STUFF YO.”
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Another heading for the site’s live video player read: “Apple unveils new computers, new software and a Maverick Sea Lion at WWDC 2013,” an apparent play on words referring to the company's newly released operating system.
The timing of the event was conspicuous as the nebulous hacktivist collective Anonymous, which has earned a reputation for such attacks, participated in a global protest on Tuesday in honor of Guy Fawkes Day. To coincide with the holiday, Anonymous’ “Million Mask March” kicked off in 450 cities across the United States and around the world, including Amsterdam, Sarajevo, Bangalore, Perth and Reykjavik.
Anonymous has not claimed credit for Fox News’ website issues, and the site has since returned to its normal operations. In a tweet to their nearly 3.4 million Twitter followers, Fox News blamed the errors on an issue with “internal production.”
â€” Fox News (@FoxNews) November 5, 2013