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  • An Iranian national flag flutters during the opening ceremony of the 16th International Oil, Gas & Petrochemical Exhibition (IOGPE) in Tehran April 15, 2011.

    An Iranian national flag flutters during the opening ceremony of the 16th International Oil, Gas & Petrochemical Exhibition (IOGPE) in Tehran April 15, 2011. | Photo: Reuters

Published 24 June 2019

Tension are running high between longtime foes Iran and the United States after U.S. President Donald Trump on Friday said he called off a military strike to retaliate for the Middle East nation’s downing of an unmanned U.S. drone.

The U.S. has increased their cyber warfare against the Iranian government since Republican President Donald Trump was elected in late 2016.

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On Thursday, however, the Pentagon launched a long-planned cyber-attack, Yahoo News said, citing former intelligence officials. The cyber strike disabled Iranian rocket launch systems, the Washington Post said on Saturday.

Iranian Information Minister Mohammad Javad Azari Jahromi tweeted on Monday that the U.S.’ long-planned cyber-attacks to destabilize the Islamic Republic’s rocket launch systems have repeatedly failed.  

“They try hard, but have not carried out a successful attack,” Jahromi said. “Media asked if the claimed cyber-attacks against Iran are true,” he continued. “Last year we neutralized 33 million attacks with the (national) firewall.”

Azari Jahromi called attacks on Iranian computer networks “cyber-terrorism”, referring to Stuxnet, the first publicly known example of a virus used to attack industrial machinery, which targeted Iran’s nuclear facilities in November 2007.

Stuxnet, widely believed to have been developed by the United States and Israel, was discovered in 2010 after it was used to attack a uranium enrichment facility in the Iranian city of Natanz.

Washington accused Tehran of stepping up cyber-attacks.

Officials have detected a rise in “malicious cyber activity” directed at the United States by people tied to the Iranian government, Chris Krebs, director of the Department of Homeland Security’s cybersecurity agency, said on Saturday on Twitter.

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