Yesterday afternoon, something funny happened. A broadcast of C-SPAN was interrupted and replaced by a feed from RT, the Russian propaganda channel for a few minutes:
C-SPAN posted an explanation on its Twitter account, blaming the glitch on a “routing error”:
Statement from C-SPAN about January 12 Online Signal Interruption pic.twitter.com/dlkSOntJgz
— CSPAN (@cspan) January 13, 2017
Fair enough, mistakes happen. And sometimes they cluster, because MSNBC was also having technical difficulties yesterday:
No comment yet from MSNBC on what happened.
Finally, since glitches often come in threes, the lights mysteriously went out in the middle of Rep. Mike Pompeo’s hearing to become the head of the CIA. Perhaps in good fun, Senators tweeted about the odd occurrence:
Lights suspiciously went off in hearing room for new CIA director, Mike Pompey. Hmmm… .
— JohnCornyn (@JohnCornyn) January 12, 2017
The Senate superintendent attributed the outage to work being done in the neighborhood by the electric utility.
So maybe there really is nothing to see here. Except that coming as it does at the crest of a news cycle completely obsessed with Russian meddling, it serves as a reminder of just how much chaos a concerted cyber attack could potentially wreak, even without touching more vital assets like power plants, hospitals, and traffic control systems.