(Reuters) - Microsoft Corp (MSFT.O) recently alerted one of Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden’s main election campaign advisory firms that it had been targeted by suspected Russian state-backed hackers, according to three people briefed on the matter.
The hacking attempts targeted staff at Washington-based SKDKnickerbocker, a campaign strategy and communications firm working with Biden and other prominent Democrats, over the past two months, the sources said.
A person familiar with SKDK’s response to the attempts said the hackers failed to gain access to the firm’s networks. “They are well-defended, so there has been no breach,” the person said.
SKDK Vice Chair Hilary Rosen declined to comment. A Biden spokesman did not respond to a request for comment.
The hacking attempts on SKDK come as U.S. intelligence agencies have raised alarms about possible efforts by foreign governments to interfere in the November presidential election.
Investigations by former special counsel Robert Mueller and the Senate intelligence committee both concluded that affiliates of the Russian government interfered in the 2016 presidential election, and Mueller has warned that Russia was meddling in the current campaign.
One of the sources said it was not clear whether Biden’s campaign was the target or whether the Russians were attempting to gain access to information about other SKDK clients.
This is not surprising nor is a shock. We knew this was going to happen and we know that the GOP's efforts to block any effort to bolster America's cyber defenses are going to result in a seriously compromised election. The Republican leadership in the Senate have effectively blocked virtually every attempt to fight back against Russian interference in our election.
In and of itself, this is another example of collusion with an adversary that is trying to subvert and destroy our democracy. I wish the media would wake up, and I don't think we're going to find out what's going on until well after the election.