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Anti-doping agencies subjected to 'significant' cyberattacks

Microsoft Corp. says a Russia-linked cyberhacking group has made "significant" attacks on at least 16 sports and anti-doping organizations across three continents since September.

The technology company said Monday the attacks are coming from a group associated with Fancy Bear, which has hacked into systems at the World Anti-Doping Agency and elsewhere to publish reams of confidential medical material on Olympic athletes.

Fancy Bear was among those cited in a 2018 indictment brought by U.S. officials who accused Russia of seeking revenge against WADA, the International Olympic Committee and others that penalized the country based on evidence it engineered a wide-ranging, state-sponsored doping scandal.

Microsoft says the latest round of attacks began Sept. 16, the same week reports surfaced that Russia had manipulated data it provided WADA as the agency tries to corroborate doping cases.

Microsoft did not identify which agencies had been hacked. An IOC spokesman said the IOC does not comment on cyberattack reports. WADA said there was no evidence of any breach of WADA systems.

In other doping-related news, WADA says it has received responses to follow-up questions asked of Russian authorities regarding altered lab data and hopes to have the case resolved before president Craig Reedie's term expires at the end of the year.

In September, WADA gave the Russians three weeks to explain the discrepancies in data being used to corroborate doping cases stemming from the country's scheme to cheat during the Sochi Olympics and other events. But those explanations brought about further questions.

On Monday, WADA acknowledged that it now expects its compliance review committee to make a recommendation on the case at the end of November, and if that happens, the WADA executive committee could rule by the end of the year.

It means a decision on the status of Russia's anti-doping agency won't come next week at the WADA board meeting and world anti-doping conference, when it was originally expected.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.