Monday, July 15, 2024

Russian hackers attempted to access secrets from two government agencies while spying on Microsoft executives.

Russian Hackers Impact US Government Departments in Microsoft Breach Incident

In a recent development, the Microsoft Security Team uncovered a nation-state cyber attack by Russian hackers, identified as Midnight Blizzard, who successfully breached the company’s corporate email systems. Now, it has come to light that two US government departments, the Department of Veterans Affairs and an arm of the US State Department, were among the victims of this cyber intrusion.

According to a report by Bloomberg, the US Agency for Global Media disclosed that Microsoft notified them a few months ago about the potential theft of data due to the breach. A spokesperson from the State Department confirmed that they are in contact with Microsoft and are cooperating closely with the Department of Homeland Security to address the situation.

Although no sensitive data was compromised in the attack on the State Department, the Department of Veterans Affairs reported that they were impacted by the breach back in March. Microsoft had initially revealed the breach in January, warning of possible exploitation of shared secrets between the hackers and their customers.

The hackers allegedly used stolen credentials to access a test environment on the VA’s Microsoft Cloud account, but the intrusion lasted only a second as the hackers were likely verifying the validity of the credentials. The agency promptly changed the exposed credentials and login details once they were alerted to the breach.

As the investigation continues, Microsoft is reaching out to affected customers to notify them if their accounts were accessed by the hackers. The company is emphasizing transparency and working diligently to address the security implications of this cyber attack.

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