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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.

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  3. Economy: Conference Board predicts economy won’t fully recover until late 2021.
  4. Education: Surge threatens to shut classrooms down again.
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  6. Travel: CDC replaces COVID-19 cruise ban with less restrictive "conditional sailing order."
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Updated 7 hours ago - Economy & Business

Dunkin' Brands agrees to $11B Inspire Brands sale

Photo: Alexi Rosenfeld/Getty Images

Dunkin' Brands, operator of both Dunkin' Donuts and Baskin-Robbins, agreed on Friday to be taken private for nearly $11.3 billion, including debt, by Inspire Brands, a restaurant platform sponsored by private equity firm Roark Capital.

Why it matters: Buying Dunkin’ will more than double Inspire’s footprint, making it one of the biggest restaurant deals in the past 10 years. This could ultimately set up an IPO for Inspire, which already owns Arby's, Jimmy John's and Buffalo Wild Wings.

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Federal judge halts Trump administration limit on TikTok

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

A federal judge on Friday issued an injunction preventing the Trump administration from imposing limits on the distribution of TikTok, Bloomberg reports. The injunction request came as part of a suit brought by creators who make a living on the video service.

Why it matters: The administration has been seeking to force a sale of, or block, the Chinese-owned service. It also moved to ban the service from operating in the U.S. as of Nov. 12, a move which was put on hold by Friday's injunction.