Microsoft Stymies Hacking Attempt on 2018 Election Candidates

Microsoft detected Russian phishing attacks on three 2018 campaigns

However, Burt refused to name the candidates. "We can't disclose [identities] because we maintain our customer privacy, but I can tell you that they were all people who, due to their positions, might have been interesting targets from an espionage standpoint".

Tom Burt, Microsoft vice president for customer security, said Thursday at the Aspen Security Forum in Colorado the hackers who meddled in the 2016 vote have already gone after the campaigns of at least three 2018 candidates.

"They did not get into those candidates", Mr. Burt added.

Because of that, Burt explained, Microsoft has made a habit of tracking the group, and using its legal team to have those domains seized and either shut down or handed over to Microsoft's security team, who then use them to gather information about the inner-workings of the operation.

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The Hill reported that Burt did not state if the company believed the hacking attempts were linked to Russian Federation.

Last week, 12 members of GRU were indicted on charges they were involved in hacking servers used by the Democratic National Committee, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee and Hillary Clinton's campaign during the 2016 race. Russian hackers were able to compromise Mr. Podesta's personal email account and pilfer private correspondence later leaked online by fooling one of his staffers into visiting a phishing page resembling a legitimate Gmail log-in site and entering Mr. Podesta's password, according to the Justice Department.

So far, Burt said Russian efforts to meddle with the 2018 mid-terms, haven't matched the level of activity the company saw during the 2016 election, which involved attacks on think tanks and academia and using social networking services to research potential targets. "There's a lot of time left before the election". Trump appeared to answer "no", but the White House has since argued that the "no" was not in response to the reporter's question.

In other words, the sort of mischief Moscow's intelligence agents got up to in 2016 to interfere with the USA presidential election, allegedly.

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