Hacker Group Suspected Behind Recent Microsoft Outage

Cyber Security, Newsletter

Recent service disruptions experienced by Microsoft have been attributed to a DDoS Cyber Attack, with experts suggesting that the hackers behind the operation are most likely linked to a Russian-backed group. The group, known as Anonymous Sudan, which first surfaced in January 2023, initially appeared to be a grassroots pro-Islam collective operating out of Sudan. However, a report released by cyber security firms have suggested otherwise.
 
Analysis by leading Cyber Security experts has revealed that Anonymous Sudan’s operations are unlikely to be the work of an independent hacktivist organisation, but rather indicative of a closely held operation, potentially backed by the Russian state. The hackers have also claimed responsibility for at least 24 other distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks on Australian companies in sectors including healthcare, aviation, and education.
 
Microsoft confirmed that outages to its Outlook service in early June were the result of a DDoS attack believed to have been carried out by Anonymous Sudan. The company’s Microsoft 365 software suite, including Teams and Outlook, were down for more than two hours for thousands of users on June 5th, followed by a brief recurrence the following morning. This was the fourth such outage for Microsoft in a year.
 
While the group has successfully garnered over 60,000 followers on their Telegram channel since launching, it has been highlighted of the group’s use of paid infrastructure in their attacks. Directing mass amounts of traffic to a service in order to bring it down could have potentially cost tens of thousands of dollars, making it less likely to have been executed by a loose collective. Furthermore, Anonymous Sudan has shown alignment with pro-Russian threat actors and is thought to be a member of the pro-Russia hacker group Killnet.
 
As cyber attacks continue to rise around the world, it is essential that businesses large and small have comprehensive cyber security solutions in place to protect them from attack. Whilst we hear often about the large cyber attacks such as the MOVEit attack, 3CX, Schools & Universities, and many others, the reality is that 81% of Cyber Attacks are actually the ones we don’t hear about in the media which target Small to Medium Sized businesses. Furthermore, 97% of these Cyber Attacks could have been prevented if businesses had comprehensive modern Cyber Security solutions in place. If you want to find out more about how you can protect your business from the latest Cyber Threats, download our FREE Cyber Security Self Assessment form at the link below.

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