The FBI has launched an investigation after thousands of fake email messages were sent from one of its servers warning of a possible cyber attack.
The government company said the incident on Saturday morning was part of an ongoing situation but provided no further details.
The messages purported to be from the US department of homeland security. They claimed to be a warning about a supposed threat and were titled: “urgent threat actor in system”.
The fake emails from FBI internal server told recipients that they were the target of a sophisticated chain attack from an extortion group known as the dark overlord, according to the non-profit anti-spam watchdog spam.
“They are causing a lot of disruption because the headers are real, they really are coming from FBI infra structure,” spam tweeted, adding that they did not include names or contact information from the sender.
According to US media reports, more than 100,000 emails were sent out.
The company said the affected hardware was quickly taken offline after the issue was detected and warned the public to be “cautious of unknown senders” and to report suspicious activity to the government.