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Reports: Iran-linked hackers targeted Trump 2020 campaign

Written by James Delahunty @ 05 Oct 2019 12:45

Reports: Iran-linked hackers targeted Trump 2020 campaign

Microsoft has revealed an attempt to identify and target e-mail accounts related to the U.S. 2020 Presidential Elections by a group with suspected links to Tehran.
Tom Burt, Corporate Vice President, Customer Security & Trust at Microsoft, revealed in an article that a group he identified as Phosphorus had targeted accounts linked to an election campaign for the U.S. 2020 Presidential Election. Microsoft believes that the attack originates from Iran and is linked to the Iranian government.

During August and September, Microsoft observed more than 2,700 attempts to identify consumer e-mail accounts belonging to specific Microsoft customers. 241 of these accounts were later directly attacked and four were compromised. Microsoft would only say that the targeted accounts are associated with a U.S. presidential campaign, current and former U.S. government officials, journalists covering global politics and prominent Iranians living outside Iran.

However, sources told the Reuters news agency that U.S. President Donald Trump's re-election campaign was specifically targeted, but the operation was unsuccessful. Responding to the report, Tim Murtaugh of the Trump campaign said it has no indication that any of its campaign infrastructure being targeted.

The four accounts confirmed to be compromised by Microsoft were not associated with the U.S. presidential campaign or current and former U.S. government officials.

Tensions between Washington and Tehran have been tense since President Trump decided to pull out of the nuclear pact with the country. Since then, the U.S. has accused Iran of being behind several attacks in the region, including an attack on a Saudi oil facility in September.

More info: Microsoft

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