The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) has confirmed that its Anti-Doping Administration and Management System (ADAMS) database was hacked by a Russian espionage group. The attack came from the alias Tsar Team (APT28), also known as Fancy Bear.
Fancy Bear hacked into an International Olympic Committee (IOC) account for the 2016 Rio Olympics. The group gained access to confidential information including athlete medical data as well as Therapeutic Use Exemptions (TUE).
It is believed that access was gained via a phishing email. Olivier Niggli, Director General, WADA stated, “WADA deeply regrets this situation and is very conscious of the threat that it represents to athletes whose confidential information has been divulged through this criminal act. We are reaching out to stakeholders, such as the IOC, IFs and NADOs, regarding the specific athletes impacted.”
WADA has brought the attention of relevant law enforcement authorities and is conducting its own security vulnerability checks to work to prevent this in the future.
So far, Fancy Bears has released information on United States Olympic athletes including Simone Biles (gymnast), Serena and Venus Williams (tennis) and Elena Delle Donne (basketball). The hackers have indicated their will release more information about United States athletes as well as athletes from more countries. No leaked information about weightlifters have been released yet.