Microsoft says Russian hackers have returned to attack US government
In a message on its corporate blog, Microsoft claims that the group of ‘hackers’ known as Nobelium and acting on behalf of the Russian state is “attacking organizations that are an integral part of the global information technology supply chain”.
Microsoft recalled that Nobelium is the entity responsible for the cyberattacks that in late 2020 managed to infiltrate the systems of the US Government and companies, through the ‘software’ SolarWinds, which is linked to Russia’s external information services.
Since May, Microsoft has registered more than 140 tech companies that have been attacked by Nobelium and that, in at least 14 of those cases, the ‘hackers’ have succeeded.
The victims of this new wave of cyber attacks are companies that provide cloud computing services – an industry that has skyrocketed since the beginning of the covid-19 pandemic – and other information technology products.
The hackers’ tactic is to use these technology providers to gain access to their customers’ systems.
“This recent activity is another indicator that Russia is trying to gain long-term, systematic access to a variety of points in the technology supply chain and establish a mechanism for surveilling – now or in the future – targets of interest to the Russian government.”, explained Microsoft in its message.
By the end of last year, Nobelium was able to penetrate the systems of at least nine US Government agencies and departments, as well as nearly 100 private sector companies, updating the North company’s popular Orion software program.