A pair of Russian intelligence agents allegedly worked with for-hire hackers to steal data on hundreds of millions of Yahoo accounts, federal prosecutors said in an indictment released Wednesday.
Alleged spies Dmitry Aleksandrovich Dokuchaev and Igor Anatolyevich Sushchin worked with Russian Alexsey Alexseyevich Belan to gain access to a Yahoo user database and account management software, then used those tools to generate browser cookies that let them access the content of more than 6,500 Yahoo accounts, including those of Russian journalists and U.S. officials, prosecutors said.
Belan also "manipulated some of the servers associated with Yahoo's English-language search engine" to direct people looking for erectile dysfunction drugs to an online pharmacy that paid him a commission and stole credit and gift card numbers from Yahoo users' accounts, prosecutors allege. He also allegedly harvested users' contact information "to facilitate a spam campaign," prosecutors say. SM