Microsoft President Says Cyberattack Blamed On Russian Hackers Was ‘Most Sophisticated’ Ever

February 15, 2021 06:21 GMT – RFE/RL

A hacking campaign that U.S. intelligence services have said Russia likely was behind is “probably the largest and most sophisticated attack the world has ever seen,” Microsoft President Brad Smith said.

Smith, speaking in an interview that aired on February 14 on CBS, discussed the scope of the massive intrusion discovered in December that breached government and private company networks in the United States and many other countries.

“When we analyzed everything that we saw at Microsoft, we asked ourselves how many engineers have probably worked on these attacks. And the answer we came to was, well, certainly more than 1,000,” Smith said, speaking with the program 60 Minutes.

Cybersecurity experts have said it could take months to identify all the compromised systems and expel the hackers. Russia has denied any involvement in the cyberattack.

Microsoft announced in late December that it was among the thousands of companies that found its systems compromised. It said that hackers gained access to its source code but said the activity did not put the security of its services or any customer data at risk.

The software giant had previously acknowledged that like U.S. government agencies and other firms, it had downloaded updates of network management software made by the company SolarWinds that the hackers had targeted. The compromised software provided hackers a backdoor into government and company networks.

Microsoft said at the time that the hacking operation was carried out by a “very sophisticated nation-state actor” and said companies and businesses affected were in several other countries, including Canada, Mexico, Belgium, Spain, the United Kingdom, Israel, and the United Arab Emirates.

Then-U.S. President-elect Joe Biden called the cyberattack a “great concern” and promised to impose “substantial costs” on the perpetrators in coordination with U.S. allies and partners.

6 comments

  • Yep, a thousand Russian IT engineers working on hacking for rubles and the mini evil genius knows nothing about it…

    Liked by 5 people

  • Joe promised ‘to impose “substantial costs” on the perpetrators in coordination with U.S. allies and partners.’
    C’mon man, whaddya waitin’ for? You can now impose ‘substantial costs’ on the putinazis for the hack, Nav, the Skripals, all the other poisonings, the double tap bombing of hospitals in Syria, Nordstream 2, the Montenegro attempted coup, providing financial backing to the possible next president of France; the scum-sucking putinoid fascist Le Pen, drug-cheat sportspeople, interference in the 2016 US election and spreading lies and hate via multiple propaganda outlets. Not yet convinced? How about the trifling matter of mass murder in Georgia, the theft of 20% of its land and the takeover by stealth of its government.
    Still not convinced? How about fomenting decades of conflict between Azerbaijan and Armenia in order to divide and conquer and then occupying a chunk of the disputed land?
    I see you’re still not convinced Joe. How about committing mass murder in Ukraine, torture, rape and kidnap of Ukrainians, theft of multiple $billions worth of Ukrainian assets, poisoning its land, destabilising Ukrainian politics, promoting the offensive lie that Ukraine is somehow part of the roosky mir, occupying 7% of its land, lying about it to the world and committing atrocities on an almost daily basis. Eg: Deploying snipers to shoot clearly identifiable female medics in the head and just the other day, planting terrorist bombs to murder Ukrainian soldiers on their own land.
    Maybe that might just be enough for you to act eh Joe? Show that you are bigger than those putler jackboot licking turds Macron and Merkel.

    Liked by 5 people

      • Sadly incomplete! I forgot to add: propping up fellow filthy dictator Lukashenko and leaving Belarus in a putlerstani limbo, countless mysterious defenestrations, the murder of the doctor that saved Nav’s life, the levelling of Grozny and insertion of izlamonazi savage Khadirov, M17, the UIA missile attack by proxy, providing kremlin agents Assange and Snowden with information that led to the savage death of British and American intel assets in Afghanistan, Pakistan and elsewhere.
        Oh and just being an evil bastard.

        Liked by 3 people

  • Simple solution right ? Biden just needs to enact the crippling sanctions already approved by Congress.
    First off , I believe that these should already be in place due to Russia’s past behavior. , Biden isn’t going to begin his term by introducing massive sanctions. There’s only a thin line between espionage and disruption in cyberspace, to all available evidence they use the opportunity to disrupt. It’s possible that US cyber deterrence is so successful that it produced in the minds of the Russians the fear of doing so. It’s also possible that the United States has already made infiltrations that would make the Solar Winds hack look miniscule.

    Liked by 3 people

  • I think Brad is giving the mafiosi too much credit. But, I understand why. It doesn’t make our systems seem as utterly vulnerable as, in fact, they are. For years the Ruskies have been penetrating our computer systems but not only them. The chinks too, enjoy going shopping in our secret cyberspace. It was only a couple of years ago when, after the mafiosi penetrated our system in a grand scale, I hoped that we’ve learned our lesson and did something about it. However, as we see, everyone is still snoozing.

    Liked by 3 people

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.