Since Inauguration Day, several terrestrial radio stations from around the country have been dealing with the same problem: an unstoppable audio loop of YG and Nipsey Hussle’s track “FDT (Fuck Donald Trump).” Stations in South Carolina, Indiana, Texas, Tennessee, and Kentucky have all had their signals hacked over the past two weeks resulting in unexpected airtime for “FDT,” according to multiple sources.
On January 20th, reports began to surface of radio stations in Kentucky and Texas playing the song on repeat for hours. HeatStreet confirmed with Crescent Hill Radio in KY and 100.5 KCGF-LP in TX that the broadcasts were not intentional. Crescent Hill Radio reportedly had to go off the air entirely for several hours to fix the problem.
El Jefe 96.7 in Tennessee and Mother of the Redeemer Radio in Indiana were also hacked on January 20th, according to Radio Insight.
The stations eventually discovered it was through their Barix Estreamer devices that the hackers had gained access to their transmissions. The simple internet-connected antenna isn’t secured by default, according to BuzzFeed, which left the stations vulnerable to attack.
“Other stations that it happened to have contacted me, and we all used the same device, and none of us had set a password to the device,” Kathy Weisbach, founder and president of Crescent Hill, told HeatStreet. “My bad, as I had done other security measures at the tower and the studio but failed to password protect this device. You can bet it is now.”
But, days later, the hacks continued at other stations.
In a January 30th post screencapped by BuzzFeed that has since been deleted, Frank Patterson, president of the Lake Keowee Broadcasting group in Salem, SC wrote on the WFBS-FM Facebook page, “Our internet has been HACKED at our transmitter site and the station has played anti-Trump songs. This is NOT our broadcast!”
Patterson said in the post that he planned to contact the FCC about the hack.
Radio Insight points out that this is not the first time this kind of hack has happened because of an unsecured Barix device. Last April, multiple stations reported their regular programming was suddenly interrupted by a podcast about furry sex.