Canada’s Federal Election Under Threat of Cyber Attacks in W5 Season Premiere, Airing Sept. 21 on CTV ### Plus: How Genealogy Cracked a Cold Case and What it Means for Canadians’ Privacy

— September 16, 2019

– Canada’s most-watched and award-winning documentary series, W5, returns for its 54th season with a sit-down interview with Russian cyber-trolls working to manipulate voters in elections –
– W5 also delivers “Family Secrets”, explaining how a decades-old murder case was solved through an unexpected DNA connection –

TORONTO (September 16, 2019)W5, Canada’s most-watched documentary series and North America’s longest-running investigative series, returns for its 54th season of in-depth investigations and compelling stories on Saturday, Sept. 21 at 7 p.m. ET on CTV, the CTV app, and CTVNews.ca with an investigation into how Canada’s current federal election is under threat from Russian cyber-trolls.

In the premiere episode, W5 correspondent Peter Akman examines the cyber threat to Canadian democracy in “Dirty Tricks”. The 2016 United States presidential election saw an unprecedented campaign by Russian agencies to create division and exploit differences among American voters, and now the same operatives have set their sights on Canadian voters. Akman travels to the epicenter of election hacking, St. Petersburg, Russia, and speaks with “cyber-trolls” to uncover how they do it, how vulnerable we are, and where the weaknesses lie in Canada’s electoral system.

Also this week, in “Family Secrets”, W5 correspondent Sandie Rinaldo tells the inside story of a double murder that remained unsolved for more than three decades until the case was cracked using a new scientific technique that combines DNA information and genealogical research. The conviction, which relied on DNA from a distant relative, ushered in a new era for law enforcement that has some celebrating while others are left devastated when their genetic past is revealed.

“As we launch the 54th season of W5, the series continues to be a vital source for captivating and meaningful investigative journalism,” said Wendy Freeman, President, CTV News. “CTV News is proud to support W5 as it shines the spotlight on critical issues and untold stories unfolding in both our local communities and around the world.”

“Throughout our new season, W5 upholds our commitment to inform Canadian viewers through unparalleled investigative reporting,” said Anton Koschany, Executive Producer, W5. “We seek out the truth and expose stories of widespread significance, beginning in our season premiere by gaining unprecedented access into one of the world’s most urgent political issues – Russian hackers working to manipulate voters and influence our elections.”

W5 recently received top honours from the RTDNA for outstanding achievements in electronic and digital journalism, including the Trina McQueen Award for Best Network Television News Information Program for the stories “Hot Wheels” and “Suspect Zero”, as well as the Dan MacArthur Investigative Multiplatform Network Award for the story “No Witnesses.”

W5 launches a new season of entertaining, informing, and educating Canadians and upholding its commitment to first-rate investigative journalism powered by its unparalleled team. Contributors to Canada’s most-watched documentary program include CTV’s Chief News Anchor and Senior Editor Lisa LaFlamme, W5 correspondent and CTV NATIONAL NEWS Weekend Anchor Sandie Rinaldo, W5 investigative journalists Avery Haines and Peter Akman, as well as a roster of distinguished correspondents from across CTV News.

In addition to airing Saturdays at 7 p.m. ET beginning Saturday, Sept. 21 on CTV, W5 also airs Saturdays at 10 p.m. on CTV2, as well as Sundays (see local listings). W5 is also available on demand at CTVNews.ca/W5, and on the CTV and CTV News apps.

About W5
With an ongoing commitment to covering tough, relevant stories with fair and responsible reporting, W5 is in its 54th season of investigative journalism. W5 is the most-watched documentary program in Canada, and the winner of several awards including the prestigious Gordon Sinclair Award for Broadcast Journalism. Anton Koschany is Executive Producer of W5. Brett Mitchell is Senior Producer. Wendy Freeman is President, CTV News.

About CTV
CTV is Canada’s #1 television brand. CTV provides unparalleled entertainment programming across two broadcast television networks; a powerful suite of specialty channels including CTV Comedy Channel, CTV Drama Channel, CTV Life Channel, and CTV Sci-Fi Channel; and digital platforms CTV.ca, CTV Throwback, CTV Movies, and the CTV app. CTV has been Canada’s most-watched television network for the past 18 years in a row and features a wide range of sports and information programming, including CTV News, Canada’s highest-rated national and local newscasts. CTV comes from Bell Media, Canada’s premier multimedia company with leading assets in television, radio, digital, and out-of-home advertising.

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