Microsoft reported that hackers had targeted “more than 250 Office 365 tenants, with a focus on U.S. and Israeli defence technology companies, Persian Gulf ports of entry, or global maritime transportation companies with business presence in the Middle East”. It found that “less than 20 of the targeted tenants were successfully compromised”, but that the responsible activity cluster “continues to evolve their techniques to refine its attacks”. The company added that “this activity likely supports the national interests of the Islamic Republic of Iran”, judging that “this targeting supports Iranian government tracking of adversary security services and maritime shipping”. The same day, Facebook announced that it had “removed 93 Facebook accounts, 14 Pages, 15 Groups and 194 Instagram accounts in Iran that targeted primarily domestic audiences in that country”, adding: “We found this activity as part of our internal investigation into suspected coordinated inauthentic behaviour in the region and linked it to individuals associated with the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps”.
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