This is not Microsoft’s first cybersecurity misadventure. After a major Microsoft Azure security breach, the company this time suffered an accidental data leak a few days ago, reports Vice this August 16. Employees of the tech giant have published internal company login credentials on GitHub, a code-sharing platform. This information would give access to certain Microsoft systems and could have been used as a gateway by hackers to attack the firm’s services.
Identifiers linked to Microsoft Azure
It was the cybersecurity research firm, spiderSilk, that discovered Microsoft’s information on GitHub. According to details provided by Mossab Hussein, head of security at spiderSilk, seven different credentials have been made public. Each of these identifiers was directly linked to Azure servers, Microsoft’s cloud computing service.
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According to spiderSilk, three of the seven login credentials were still active when they were discovered, with one even going live shortly before Microsoft confirmed the leak. This accident highlights the high risk of employees inadvertently disclosing sensitive information, even among tech giants.
“ We continue to see accidental source code and credential leaks among a company’s sources of attack, and it is becoming increasingly difficult to identify them in a timely and accurate manner. This is a very difficult problem for most businesses these days. “, explained Mossab Hussein.
Credential compromise, the scourge of cybersecurity
Microsoft did not wish to specify which systems the identifiers were associated with, but spiderSilk assures that a seasoned hacker could have accessed the systems of interest from this initial gateway. Curiously, spiderSilk points out that exposed identifiers refer to the internal Azure DevOp server, one of the targets of the Lapsus$ hacker group during a cyberattack last March.
A Microsoft spokesperson returned to this leak to Vicestating that “ we have investigated and taken steps to secure this identifying information. Although it was made public by accident, we saw no evidence that sensitive data was impacted or that credentials were used inappropriately. We are continuing our investigation and will continue to take necessary steps to prevent the inadvertent sharing of identifying information. “.
A study published by IBM Security at the end of July highlights that the compromise of credentials is the leading cause of data breaches in 2022, more than 19% of companies are concerned. This type of cybersecurity breach is also the most expensive, at an average of $4.91 million, more than the cost of ransomware, for example.