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Photo by Sean Gallup/Getty Images

Fancy Bear, a Russian espionage hacking group best known for the 2016 breaches of the Democratic National Committee, is trying to hack email accounts of sports and anti-doping groups, reports Microsoft.

The big picture: As Russia struggles with anti-doping rules, Fancy Bear's targeting of sports groups has become a near-annual event since 2016.

The new campaign began on Sept. 16, according to Microsoft, as new cheating allegations ramped up.

  • Fancy Bear attempted to breach the email accounts of 16 national and international sporting and anti-doping groups.
  • Most attacks failed, though some succeeded.

Background: Fancy Bear is a good example of cyber espionage for reasons of national vanity.

  • While the U.S. was preoccupied with the political hacks in 2016, Fancy Bear is believed to have spearheaded attacks against the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) in retaliation for a near-national ban of the Russian Olympic team. Russia had been caught systemically cheating on performance-enhancing drug tests.
  • U.S. intelligence agencies believe that Russia hacked the DNC in 2016 in part due to the WADA ban. Putin blamed the Obama administration for his athletes being caught.
  • Just as Russia interfaced with the public about the DNC hack using a cover persona ("Guccifer 2.0"), Russia interfaced with reporters about the WADA attacks as a Polish affiliate of the hacktivist group Annonymous.
  • During the 2018 Winter Olympics, Fancy Bear is believed to have launched a wide malware campaign dubbed "Olympic Destroyer," designed to pin blame on North Korea. It was a rare period when North Korea would be an unlikely target, as Pyongyang was making every effort to peacefully participate in the South Korean games.

Go deeper

Hispanic Heritage Month: Gracias, México, for color TVs

The patent diagram (left) from Guillermo González Camarena's chromoscopic adapter, and he and the engineer (right inspecting TV equipment around 1955 in Mexico City. Photos: U.S. Patent Office and Instituto Nacional de Antropología e Historia de México

Credit Mexican engineering and entrepreneurship for developments that led to the in color television, oral contraception and finding a way to help mend the ozone layer.

Why it matters: The contributions helped modernize how we could see the world; improve women's health and expand women's roles beyond the home; and identify dangerous emissions and how to reduce them.

Ipsos poll: Support growing for abortion rights in Latin America

Members of feminist groups in Saltillo, Mexico, after the decriminalization of abortion was approved in Coahuila, Mexico. Photo: Antonio Ojeda/Agencia Press South/Getty Images

Support for abortion rights in some Latin American countries has jumped considerably since 2014, with Argentina seeing the biggest shift, an Ipsos poll finds.

The big picture: The view that abortion should be permitted at least under certain circumstances is held by a majority of adults surveyed in Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Mexico and Peru.

Biden claims "era of relentless war" is over in first UN speech

Photo: Eduardo Munoz/Pool/AFP via Getty Images

Addressing the UN General Assembly for the first time since taking office, President Biden laid out his vision for how the U.S. will confront what he characterized as a "decisive" next decade in human history.

Why it matters: In the face of unprecedented global challenges — the pandemic, climate change, rising authoritarianism — Biden made a case for multilateralism, democratic values, the rule of law and empathy for common struggles.