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Iranian hackers wage cyber campaign amid tensions with US

Written by The Associated Press | Jun 22, 2019 9:24 AM
Homeland Security cybersecurity.jpg

A worker is surrounded by computer monitors in the Department of Homeland Security's National Cybersecurity and Communications Integration Center (NCCIC) in Arlington, Va.  The center serves as the hub for the federal government's cyber situational awareness, incident response, and management center for any malicious cyber activity. (AP Photo/Cliff Owen)

(Washington) -- Cybersecurity firms say Iran has increased its offensive cyberattacks against the U.S. government and critical infrastructure as tensions have grown between the two nations.

CrowdStrike and FireEye, which regularly track such activity, say in recent weeks hackers believed to be working for the Iranian government have targeted U.S. government agencies, as well as sectors of the economy, including oil and gas.

The firms say the hackers have sent waves of spear-phishing emails.

It is not known if the hackers managed to gain access to the targeted networks with the emails, which typically mimic legitimate emails but contain malicious software.

The cyber offensive is the latest chapter in ongoing cyber operations between the U.S. and Iran.

The recent sharp increase is occurring after the Trump administration imposed sanctions on the Iranian petrochemical sector this month.

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