According to PANA News several state-backed Iranian oil firms have recently been targeted by a group of hackers from Saudi Arabia.
The websites of the Iranol, the Iranian Oil Ministry, and the National Iranian Oil Company were all targeted by a worm (a type of virus that self-replicates in order to spread deeper and deeper into a computer system) on the 22nd of April. The virus was detected and removed before it could affect the systems.
This is not the first time that Iran, currently under pressure from the US and Europe in regards to its nuclear activities, has fallen victim to a cyber-attack. Just last month the country’s state controlled media company reported that a major cyber-attack against its oil industry had been thwarted. A different worm virus had infected the Iranian Oil Ministry, the National Iranian Oil Company, and a number of other government owned entities.
Back in 2010 the Iranian government found a vicious virus called ‘Stuxnet’ hidden deep within the centrifuges of the country’s nuclear facility at Bushehr. The virus was designed to cause severe damage to the Iranian nuclear programme, but was also detected and removed before it could achieve its aim.