US government charges two Russian spies in Yahoo hacking case

Two members of a Russian intelligence agency have been charged by the US government in connection with the 2014 hacks that compromised about 500 million Yahoo user accounts, the Department of Justice announced Wednesday.

Two other people, one Russian and one Canadian, were also charged in connection with the hacks.

The DOJ named Dmitry Dokuchaev and Igor Sushchin as the two Russian intelligence officers involved in the hacks.

Yahoo didn’t disclose the 2014 cyber attacks until last year. Yahoo later disclosed another attack that happened in 2013 that affected about 1 billion users.

Yahoo’s public disclosures about the attacks threatened to kill Verizon’s offer to buy Yahoo. In the end, Verizon and Yahoo agreed to shave $US350 million off the acquisition, bringing the cost to $US4.48 billion. Verizon originally wanted to reduce the cost of the deal by $US925 million, according to a filing by Yahoo. The acquisition is expected to close in the second quarter of this year.

The Yahoo hacks were billed as the largest in history, likely affecting the majority of Yahoo accounts. An internal Yahoo investigation into the hacks found that Yahoo executives didn’t “properly comprehend or investigate” the situation. Following the investigation, CEO Marissa Mayer gave up her 2016 bonus. Mayer also announced that she was voluntarily giving up her 2017 bonus and equity grants. Yahoo’s top lawyer, Ronald S. Bell, resigned as a result of the investigation.

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