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Hacktivist collective Anonymous has claimed they were behind the intermittent downtime of select Microsoft websites, including Hotmail.com, Microsoft.com, Live.com, Outlook.com and MSN.com, as part of Operation Killingbay.

In an open letter addressed to Microsoft that was posted on Pastebin, the attackers acknowledge that their plan to crash all of Microsoft’s Japanese domains with a distributed denial of service (DDoS) attack was a failure, but assert that they did in fact cause downtime for the sites listed above.

“A couple days ago a DDoS attack was launched at Japanese Microsoft (Domain) Websites and Servers. We are sorry to report that the Japanese Microsoft Websites and Servers did not go down as planned. Although something did go down. We took the pretty much the entire Microsoft domains down,” the message states.

“The DDoS attack was launched in response to Taiji… Although We are sorry for any inconvenience We caused you Microsoft…It’s the thought that counts right?”

the downtime was minimal, and limited to only certain regions. Microsoft issued a brief statement, but did not confirm or deny the claims issued by Anonymous.

“Microsoft can confirm that all online services have been restored. We are investigating the root cause of the disruption and will continue to keep customers updated as information becomes available,” Microsoft said.

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