An apparently malicious hacker sent spam emails from an FBI email server to at least 100,000 people Friday night, an email spam watchdog group found.

The person’s motives are unknown and it was not immediately clear to what extent the hacker entered the FBI’s email system. The email message was a bizarre, technically incoherent warning relating to cybersecurity writer Vinny Troia as well as a cyber criminal named The Dark Overlord. Troia’s company Night Lion Security published a study on The Dark Overlord in January.

The author of the email falsely claimed to be affiliated with the Department of Homeland Security.

The FBI routinely warns American companies about cyber threats targeting specific industries or when they learn that malicious hackers are trying an effective new technique. This is believed to be the first known case where an apparently malicious actor gains access to one of these systems in order to send spam to a large number of people.


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