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SALEM, Ore. (AP) — After a multi-day freeze triggered by a wave of spam messages, officials confirmed late Thursday that Oregon government emails could once again reach the public — and described the attack as part of a sophisticated scheme.

The freeze, initiated by providers at four popular email servers including Hotmail and Outlook, had blocked all messages from official Oregon.Gov addresses.

But the attack that led to the suspension likely wasn’t targeting government data. Instead, authorities said cyber-criminals sought to use state servers to as a stepping stone, giving the appearance of authenticity to the subsequent wave of spam emails.