“We are very likely to see Tehran in the coming days and weeks target American interests,” said Brett Bruen, the president of the Global Situation Room, Inc. and the former White House director of Global Engagement. “The most vulnerable and important objective for them are American businesses. They see effecting some economic impact as retribution.”
In May, the Trump administration announced it would exit the nuclear agreement. It fully restored sanctions November 4 that the U.S. had once lifted as part of that deal.
“The desperate regime may become a more aggressive actor both in the virtual and physical world … its hackers can still do serious damage,” said a recent report from the Foundation for Defense of Democracies (FDD). “Even before the U.S. withdrew from the nuclear deal, Iranian hackers appear to have gotten bolder.”
In September, the Associated Press reported a hacking group aligned with the Iranian government launched a major campaign targeting Mideast energy companies, according to FireEye, a security firm.
Analysts also said Iran’s capabilities are evolving and focusing more on using social media to spread false information and skew public opinion.
“Some of those efforts were identified and taken down by social media companies. Many have not been detected or removed,” said Bruen. “The most damaging, as we saw with Russia, is when a country can penetrate networks and then weaponize that information.”
Iranian hackers are suspected of targeting banking websites in 2012, forcing services offline. The Financial Services Information Sharing and Analysis Center is an initiative that coordinates the industry’s defense against threats.
Read more: Fox News
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