Attackers Actually Able to Read User Emails — Microsoft Hacked

Microsoft Says Hackers Had Access to Some

A hacker or group of hackers gained access to a customer support account for Microsoft, from which they then got access to information on customer accounts, including whom they communicated with. The Redmond giant disputes this claim, saying that the breach took place from 1st January 2019 to 28th March 2019. The hacks only affected consumer accounts, not paid enterprise accounts thanks to the limited access level of the breached customer service account.

Microsoft said the credentials gave access to the email addresses, subject lines and folder names of a "limited number" of email accounts, but not the actual contents of the email.

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Scammers could use the compromised email accounts to launch spam operations or steal users identities.

"We addressed this scheme, which affected a limited subset of consumer accounts, by disabling the compromised credentials and blocking the perpetrators' access", a Microsoft spokesperson told TechCrunch in a statement.

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The firm warned in its e-mail that users might receive more spam and phishing e-mails as a result of the incident, and urged users not to click on links from e-mail addresses they did not recognise. However, Vice's Motherboard reported on Sunday that Microsoft sent a notification message to about six percent of the affected Outlook.com accounts stating email content may have also been read.

It seems that a support employee had their login compromised, which meant the hackers were easily able to gain access to the account information. Our data indicates that account-related information (but not the content of any e-mails) could have been viewed, but Microsoft has no indication why that information was viewed or how it may have been used. Out of an abundance of caution, we also increased detection and monitoring to further protect affected accounts.

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When Microsoft was confronted by the evidence they admitted that hackers had more access than revealed earlier, but said only 6% of the affected had their emails read.

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