FBI email server hacked; attackers pin blame on cybersecurity consultant

The FBI logo.
(Image credit: Yuri Gripas/Getty Images)

The FBI confirmed Saturday that its servers had been hacked and fraudulent spam emails were sent to more than 100,000 people, The Washington Post reported.

These emails, which were sent to publicly listed web administrators, warned of an imminent cyber attack orchestrated by hacker group TheDarkOverlord and "white hat" cybersecurity consultant Vinny Troia.

The text of the email mistakenly identified the FBI as part of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security rather than the Department of Justice. It also used highly technical jargon, including references to "virtualized clusters" and "fastflux technologies," and contained several spelling and grammatical errors.

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The FBI said in a statement Sunday morning that they "are not able to provide any additional information at this time." Troia, however, has suggested the hack was intended as vengeful smear campaign against him. Troia's company, Night Lion Security, published a report last year that identified by name several members of the hacker group with which the spam emails claimed Troia was affiliated.

In 2017, TheDarkOverlord carried out ransomware attacks against Disney and Netflix and forced school closures by threatening the lives of students from several U.S. school districts.

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