Iran claims to develop defense against Stuxnet-like attacks

Communications minister says Iranian scientists have created a firewall to block computer viruses from harming infrastructure, like bug that damaged nuclear centrifuges

Illustrative image of conceptual cyber attack code. (DaLiu/iStock by Getty images)
Illustrative image of conceptual cyber attack code. (DaLiu/iStock by Getty images)

Iran has developed software to protect its cyber space against attacks like the Stuxnet virus, an Iranian government official said Thursday.

Communications Minister Mohammad Javad Azari-Jahromi told the official IRNA news agency the new Iranian-made program would prevent a repeat of damage from viruses that in the past targeted the Islamic Republic’s military-industrial complex.

“Iran’s university scientists have developed a firewall for industrial automation systems to neutralize industrial sabotage such as that caused by Stuxnet in power networks, and it was successfully tested,” Jahromi said.

The Stuxnet virus was uncovered in 2010 and was widely reported to have been developed together by US and Israeli intelligence. It penetrated Iran’s rogue nuclear program, taking control and sabotaging parts of its enrichment processes by speeding up its centrifuges.

File: An Iranian worker at the Uranium Conversion Facility at Isfahan, 410 kilometers south of Tehran, January 2014. (AP /Vahid Salemi)

Last November Jahromi accused Israel of a cyber attack that tried “to damage Iran’s communication infrastructure.”

The Iranians said the attack was thwarted and the Israelis wound up “empty-handed.”

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