New cyber attack targets Iran
April 26, 2011
TEHRAN - Iran has been targeted by a new computer worm named Stars, the director of Iran’s Passive Defense Organization announced on Monday.Fortunately, Iranian experts detected the computer worm and are investigating the malware, Gholam-Reza Jalali told the Mehr News Agency on Monday.
But no final result has been achieved yet, he added.
“(However), certain characteristics about the Stars worm have been identified, including that it is compatible with the (targeted) system and that the damage is very slight in the initial stage, and it is likely to be mistaken for executable files of the government,” Jalali stated.
Therefore, Iranian experts should study various aspects of this worm so that the necessary actions can be taken to deal with it, he said.
Jalali did not give any details about what facilities the worm targeted or when experts first detected it.
Stars is the second computer worm to target Iran in the past eight months.
In September 2010, international news agencies reported that the Stuxnet worm, which is capable of taking over power plants, had infected many industrial sites in Iran.
Later, Western officials and media outlets claimed that the cyber attack had hindered Iran’s nuclear program.
Iranian officials confirmed that some Iranian industrial systems had been targeted by a cyber attack, but insisted that no crashes or serious damage to the country’s industrial computer systems had been reported and said Iranian engineers had rooted out the problem.
Iran also dismissed the claim that the cyber attack had seriously affected its nuclear program.
Jalali added, “It must be taken into consideration that (the fact that we dealt with) Stuxnet does not mean that the threat has been completely eliminated since worms have specific life cycles and can continue their activities in other forms.”
“Therefore the country should prepare itself to tackle future worms since future worms, which may infect our systems, could be more dangerous than the first ones,” he noted.
Elsewhere in his remarks, Jalali said that although the United States and Israel have flouted international law in their cyber attacks against Iran, this matter can still be pursued through legal channels.
He added, “The Foreign Ministry might not have paid due attention to pursuing this issue legally. But it seems that our diplomatic apparatus should pay attention to legally pursuing cyber attacks against the Islamic Republic of Iran more than before, since many countries, such as Russia, regard any cyber attack as an official (act of) war.”
On April 16, Jalali stated that the German engineering conglomerate Siemens should be held responsible for the infection of Iranian industrial sites by the Stuxnet computer worm.
At the time, Jalali also said that the U.S. and the Zionist regime were involved in the cyber attack against Iran.