Microsoft Shuts down Websites in Association with the Russian Military Intelligence Service GRU

Microsoft Shuts down Websites in Association with the Russian Military Intelligence Service GRU

On the twentieth of August, Microsoft made public that it
effectively terminated 6 websites in affiliation with the Russian Military
Intelligence Service GRU.

The hacker group that has come to light is the well-known
Fancy Bear also referred to here, as APT28 which likewise has been formerly
connected to cyber-espionage campaigns directed towards various governments
around the globe, including to the hack of the Democratic National Committee
before the 2016 US Presidential Election.
The gathering last targeted the conservative think tanks
namely the Hudson Institute and the International Republican Institute, three
which were intended to mirror the U.S. Senate sites and one of the fake ones
even ridiculed Microsoft’s online products.
Microsoft’s Digital Crimes Unit (DCU) effectively executed a
court order to transfer the control of six internet domains made by the group.
The six domains are:
hudsonorg-my-sharepoint.com
Microsoft’s president and chief legal officer Brad Smith
wrote, “We have now used this approach 12 times in two years to shut down 84
fake websites associated with this group. Attackers want their attacks to look
as realistic as possible and they therefore create websites and URLs that look
like sites their targeted victims would expect to receive email from or visit.”
What’s more, in spite of last week’s steps, Microsoft is
anxious by the continuous activity that is focusing on these and other sites
that are for the most part centered towards elected officials, politicians,
political groups and additionally think tanks over the political range in the
United States.
Since Russian cyber-attacks directed towards the elections
are recurring and likely to expand , Microsoft is intending to protract the
Microsoft’s Defending Democracy Program with yet another initiative called the
Microsoft AccountGuard , which will provide the best in class cyber security
protection at no additional cost to all the candidates and campaign workplaces
at the federal,
state and local level as well as think tanks and political organizations that
are presently thought to be under attack.

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