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Suspected Russian hackers target Biden campaign adviser: report

Suspected Russian hackers target Biden campaign adviser: report
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Russian state-backed hackers are reportedly suspected of targeting staff at a top advisory firm working with Democratic presidential nominee Joe BidenJoe BidenTrump State Department appointee arrested in connection with Capitol riot FireEye finds evidence Chinese hackers exploited Microsoft email app flaw since January Biden officials to travel to border amid influx of young migrants MORE's campaign. 

Microsoft alerted the Biden campaign that the hacking attempt was directed at employees of SKDKnickerbocker (SKDK), a campaign strategy and communications firm that has worked with Biden's team for the past two months, Reuters reported, citing three unidentified sources. 

A person familiar with the cyberattack told the news service that the actors failed to get access to the company's network. It remains unclear what the hackers were after and whether it was something connected to the Biden campaign. 

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Microsoft reportedly contacted the campaign after determining that actors associated with the Russian government were likely involved. The hacks are said to have involved phishing, a method used to gain access to passwords. 

The Biden campaign and SKDK did not immediately return requests for comment from The Hill. 

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov pushed back against the allegations, telling Reuters they were "nonsense." 

The report comes as lawmakers voice growing concerns about the threat of election interference. The U.S. intelligence community has said Russia, Iran and China are working to meddle in November's election, which has prompted worries from some about how prepared state officials are for such a threat. 

U.S. intelligence concluded that Russia interfered in the 2016 election to harm Democratic presidential nominee Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonHillary Clinton brings up 'Freedom Fries' to mock 'cancel culture' Edie Falco to play Hillary Clinton in Clinton impeachment series White House defends Biden's 'Neanderthal thinking' remark on masks MORE and boost President TrumpDonald TrumpTrump State Department appointee arrested in connection with Capitol riot Intelligence community investigating links between lawmakers, Capitol rioters Michelle Obama slams 'partisan actions' to 'curtail access to ballot box' MORE. William Evanina, the director of the National Counterintelligence and Security Center, warned last month that Moscow's efforts in this election were focused primarily on denigrating Biden. 

In July, Evanina said that Russia was actively working to spread disinformation to undermine the elections and weaken U.S. institutions. He also said China's interference efforts were largely focused on shaping "the policy environment” in the U.S. and that Beijing preferred Biden because it found Trump unpredictable.  

Sen. Kamala HarrisKamala Harris Harris speaks with Netanyahu amid ICC probe Senate votes to take up COVID-19 relief bill Why is Joe Biden dodging the public and the press? MORE (D-Calif.), Biden's running mate, said earlier this week that she believes Russia will be at "the front of line" when it comes to foreign interference linked to the 2020 election.