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Justice Department: Hackers Behind SolarWinds Attacks Target Federal Attorney’s Office

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The attackers of the SolarWinds hack appear to have targeted key elements of the American legal system. According to To AP, The Justice Department reports that hackers attacked federal prosecutors between May 2020 and December 2020. There were 27 U.S. Attorney’s offices where attackers hacked into at least one email account, officials said.

The victims included some of the more prominent federal offices, including those in the Eastern and Southern Districts of New York, as well as Miami, Los Angeles and Washington.

The Justice Department said it has notified all victims and is taking steps to mitigate the risks of a break-in. The department has previously said there is no evidence that SolarWinds hackers have compromised secret systems, but federal prosecutors often share confidential case details.

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The Biden administration formally accused the state-backed Russian group Cozy Bear of the hacks and responded by expelling diplomats and sanctioning 32 “businesses and individuals.” Russia denies any involvement.

It is unknown if the US will step up its response. After all, the damage has already been done. However, this further illustrates the severity of the attacks and hints at the target – they were clearly interested in legal data in addition to the source code and other valuable information.

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