Menu
Syrian hackers claim FBI pays Microsoft big bucks for customer info

Syrian hackers claim FBI pays Microsoft big bucks for customer info

The Syrian Electronic Army, a hacker group closely associated with Syria's president, this week shared documents it allegedly stole that show what Microsoft charges the FBI monthly for information on the software maker's customers.

Some online publications, including the dailydot.com, have viewed these documents, which are reported to show that the FBI often pays Microsoft hundreds of thousands of dollars per month.

+Also on Network World: FBI expects to roll out malware-analysis system to business to help identify attacks | iPads, smartphones on the front lines in Syria | Syria hit by widespread Internet outage +

Microsoft says it "won't comment on the validity of any stolen emails or documents. Regarding law enforcement requests, there's nothing unusual here." The company goes on to say, "Under U.S. law, companies can seek reimbursement for costs associated with complying with valid legal orders for customer data. As we state clearly in our Law Enforcement Requests Report, we attempt to recover some of the costs associated with any such orders."

Microsoft did, however, point in the direction of a public disclosure it made in late January that its network had been compromised when some employees were targeted by a phishing attack. At the time, Microsoft said it suspected documents associated with law enforcement requests were stolen.

The documents allegedly stolen by the Syrian Electronic Army and shared with the media this week show a series of e-mails and invoices in which Microsoft's Global Criminal Compliance team bills the FBI's Digital Intercept Technology Unit regularly for providing information on Microsoft customers that's requested by the FBI, according to the Daily Dot article. According to the sampling in the article, one monthly billing appeared to be $352,000, at $200 per request.

Ellen Messmer is senior editor at Network World, an IDG website, where she covers news and technology trends related to information security. Twitter: MessmerE. E-mail: emessmer@nww.com

Read more about wide area network in Network World's Wide Area Network section.


Follow Us

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags MicrosoftWide Area Network

Featured

Slideshows

Malwarebytes shoots the breeze with channel, prospects

Malwarebytes shoots the breeze with channel, prospects

A Kumeu, Auckland, winery was the venue for a Malwarebytes event for partner and prospect MSPs - with some straight shooting on the side. The half-day getaway, which featured an archery competition, lunch and wine-tasting aimed at bringing Malwarebytes' local New Zealand and top and prospective MSP partners together to celebrate recent local successes, and discuss the current state of malware in New Zealand. This was also a unique opportunity for local MSPs to learn about how they can get the most out of Malwarebytes' MSP program and offering, as more Kiwi businesses are targeted by malware.

Malwarebytes shoots the breeze with channel, prospects
EDGE 2019: Channel forges new partnerships during evening networking

EDGE 2019: Channel forges new partnerships during evening networking

Partners, vendors and distributors reconnected during a number of social gatherings during EDGE 2019. The first evening saw the channel congregate for a welcome party at the Hamilton Island yacht club, while the main poolside proved to be the perfect stop for a barbecue on the final night.

EDGE 2019: Channel forges new partnerships during evening networking
Show Comments