The Iranian government says it is being targeted by a new piece of malware aimed at its federal computers. The disclosure comes a few months after the country’s nuclear facility was hit by the Stuxnet worm, kicking off a frenzy of cyberwar hysteria and speculation.
The new attack on Iran is the work of a piece of malware that the country’s officials have named Stars. It’s unclear at this point whether it is infecting any sensitive systems on the country’s government networks or was simply found on some normal PCs. The country’s Mehr news agency disclosed the attack Monday and said that the government’s officials are analyzing the attack now.
From the Mehr agency report:
Fortunately the Iranian experts spotted the computer worm and are still studying the malware, Gholam-Reza Jalali told the Mehr News Agency.
No final result has been achieved yet, he added.
“(However), certain characteristics about the Stars worm have been identified, including that it is compatible with the (targeted) system,” Jalali stated.
Stuxnet seems to have been written, at least in part, with the intention of infecting and disabling some esoteric systems at Iran’s Bushehr nuclear facility. The malware has been analyzed and dissected by security experts around the world, and while there is still some disagreement on exactly what Stuxnet was meant to do, many experts say that it was quite sophisticated.
No real details of the characteristics of the Stars malware or what it does on an infected system have been revealed at this point, so it’s not clear whether the malware has any destructive capabilities or steals sensitive data.