Two British men have been arrested after law enforcement discovered a plot to steal Microsoft customer data. A warrant for the pair was issued by the South East Organised crime unit (Serocu) on Thursday under the Computer Misuse Act.
According to Serocu, the two men have been arrested due to suspicions of an unauthorized infiltration of Microsoft's networks. It's said that several attempts were made between January and March of this year.
The suspects are a 22-year old from Lincolnshire and a 25-year old from Bracknell. Authorities say they may be part of a group of cybercriminals specifically targeting Microsoft.
“This group is spread around the world and therefore the investigation is being coordinated with our various partners. We've made two arrests in the UK this morning and have seized a number of devices,” said Detective Sergeant Rob Bryant from Serocu's cyber crime division. “We are still in the early stages of this investigation and will work with our partners to ensure that cyber criminals have no place to hide.”
No Customer Information Retrieved
Despite the considerable attempts, Microsoft has confirmed that the attackers were unable to view or steal any customer information. Speaking to the BBC, Microsoft vice president Tom Burt said:
“Today's action by authorities in the UK represents an important step. Stronger internet security depends on the ability to identify and prosecute cybercriminals. This requires not only a strong technical capability, but the willingness to acknowledge issues publicly and refer them to law enforcement. No company is immune from cybercrime. No customer data was accessed, and we're confident in the integrity of our software and systems.”
The pair is still in custody and Microsoft, Europol, the FBI, Serocu and more are all collaborating on the case. Their full identities are yet to be revealed.