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Iran detects, contains Israeli "spy virus": daily

06-01-2012 00:45 BJT

TEHRAN, May 31 (Xinhua) -- Iranian cyber experts have detected and contained a complicated Israeli spy virus, the Kayhan daily reported on Thursday.

A computer virus which is known as "Flame" has targeted Iran's oil industry, the report said, adding that, however, Iranian experts have been able to detect and contain it.

The head of Information Technology Organization of Iran said Wednesday that the country's experts had managed to produce anti- virus software that could spot and remove the newly detected computer virus "Flame," the Press TV reported.

Ali Hakim Javadi said that the indigenous anti-virus software had been capable of detecting the virus and cleaning up the infected computers, said the report.

He said that the malware was different from other viruses and was more destructive than Stuxnet.

Internet security service provider Kaspersky on Monday announced the discovery of a serious cyber threat. The malicious program "Flame," is being used as a cyber weapon attacking several countries, according to the company. Iran is among the countries that have been affected.

Flame "is designed to carry out cyber espionage. It can steal valuable information, including but not limited to computer display contents, information about targeted systems, stored files, contact data and even audio conversations," according to a press release from Kaspersky. "The complexity and functionality of the newly discovered malicious program exceed those of all other cyber menaces known to date."

In the statement, Kaspersky said that "Flame" shared some features with Stuxnet, like same printer vulnerability and USB infection method.

Commenting on a just-revealed virus that has targeted computers in Iran, Israeli Vice Prime Minister Moshe Ya'alon said on Tuesday that his country is capable of employing cyber warfare means against Iran.

"Anyone who sees the Iranian threat as a significant threat -- it's reasonable (to assume) that he will take various steps, including these, to harm it," Ya'alon said, according to the Ha' aretz daily.

"Israel was blessed as being a country rich with high-tech, these tools that we take pride in open up all kinds of opportunities for us," he said.

On April 24, an Iranian oil official said the country's experts had contained cyber attacks against the country's Oil Ministry.

Hamdollah Mohammadnejad, deputy minister in engineering affairs, said "Recently, few number of National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) servers were attacked by a malware, but the cyber security experts of oil industry contained it immediately."

To protect the penetration of this malware to other computers connected to these servers, they were temporarily disconnected, said Mohammadnejad.

All the operational units of the oil industry were performing and the experts were busy detecting and identifying the cause of the problem, the official said.

On April 23, the semi-official ISNA news agency said that the virus was identified as "Viper," which had also targeted some other Iranian industrial websites.

In October 2010, Iranian Intelligence Minister Heidar Moslehi announced that Iran had detected and thwarted a virus aimed at infecting the country's nuclear plant system.

Iran said the computer worm, Stuxnet, had infected 30,000 IP addresses in Iran, including the personal computers of the staff at the country's first nuclear power plant, Bushehr. Tehran also claimed that Israel and conglomerate Siemens were behind the infection of its industrial sites.


Editor:Zhang Dan |Source: Xinhua

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