US and Israel Worried About How Quickly Iran is Improving its Cyber Warfare Arsenal

Iran and other nations are able to purchase powerful malware on the black and gray markets

From Thom Shanker and David Sanger, New York Times:  Israeli and American intelligence officials have been concerned by Iran’s swift advances in its computer weaponry, particularly its ability to disrupt existing infrastructure. As one former senior American military commander said recently, “They have startled everyone with the speed at which their capabilities have increased. . . .”

The emerging Iranian program is far more disciplined and mature than Tehran’s previous efforts, which had focused on social media to coax American military personnel based in the Middle East and Persian Gulf region to sign up for dating and travel services, or chat rooms. The goal was to obtain the online information from American military personnel to find back doors into military computer systems.

In addition, American officials say Iran now is believed to be hiring foreign computer programmers associated with Internet criminal activity, some from Russia.

And, perhaps most worrisome, Iran and other nations now are able to purchase powerful malware that, while costly, is available on the black and gray markets — and can quickly advance the potency of a nation’s destructive ability across computer networks.  (graphic: hackernews)

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