According to the reports that we got from our sources, Microsoft has warned close to 10,000 people that nation-state hackers have targeted their accounts and not only that, they have even breached these accounts. The giants in software came out to state that about 84 percent of the attacks from nation-state are targeted at businesses whereas the 16 percent that is left are targeted at the personal email accounts of users. The company revealed statistics showing that the scale that these attack has gone up to and that about 1,600 personal Microsoft accounts in total have been affected by these hackers of recent.
As stated by Microsoft while they were being interviewed by our sources on the matter, most of the attacks so far are originated from hackers in places such as Iran, North Korea, and Russia. The corporate Vice President for Customer Security and Trust at the company, Tom Burt, while making a statement said, “We have seen extensive activity from the actors we call Holmium and Mercury operating from Iran, Thallium operating from North Korea, and two actors operating from Russia we call Yttrium and Strontium”.
Our sources have gathered that one of the groups that is involved in this hack as discovered by the giant software company, Microsoft, is the Russian Fancy Bear collective which has sometime in the past taken part of the hack in 2016 of the Democratic National Committee as well as the NotPeva attacks which was targeted at Ukrainian banks and infrastructure in the month of June 2017.
It is not entirely going too far to assume that Microsoft is revealing that these attacks are going on without a motive. We believe that since the company is trying to get election officials and election technology suppliers to incorporate the open source software development kit (SDK) which it owns, ElectionGuard, into its systems, revealing the attacks will provide a sufficient reason why these officials and suppliers need to integrate the technology. ElectionGuard was fashioned to create open results for third parties to validate in a secure way, give voters a way of knowing if their votes were counted, and also be sure that end-to-end verification of elections was carried out.
Last year, Microsoft warned that nation-state hacking groups had already targeted three midterm candidates and the recent warning of 10,000 users combined with the warning the previous year only facilitates the fact that this is not a problem that can be resolved instantly. Tom Burt said, “So the problem is real and unabated. It is time to find solutions. Governments and civil society have important roles to play, but the tech industry also has a responsibility to help defend democracy.”