(The Hosting News) – Crude oil is a precious commodity and number one resource of many middle-eastern countries including Iran. Recently the Islamic Republic faced a crisis in the area, experiencing a cyber-attack on the system used to administer the industry and oversee exports.
The breach was so serious that the government’s response was to take the network offline. While the extent of the attack and the actual source remain a mystery, Iran shed a limited amount of light on the incident Tuesday.
According to the state-run IRNA news agency, Iranian Deputy Minister for Oil and Civil Defense Hamdollah Mohammadnejad reported on Tuesday that the oil industry was operating without a hassle with exports on schedule. Despite that, the news agency’s report did admit that a limited number of data had been affected.
It’s not the first time that one of the country’s key industries has faced a cyber-breach. In 2010, an injection of the notorious Stuxnet worm resulted in downtime for Iran’s nuclear industry. Just earlier this month, security company ISSSource reported that that attack originated from an Iranian double agent working for Israel.
Iran’s nuclear ambitions have caused global concern worldwide, especially with western governments. The Islamic Republic routinely threatens Israel, a key ally of the United States. Iran has also received scathing criticism regarding its human rights record.
Regarding Internet access in the country, the Islamic Republic has been noted for its national firewall, blocking access to particular websites it deems unsuitable for its citizens. Iranians have regularly relied on virtual private networks (VPNs) as a way to get around the blocking.
In February, it was reported that web users in the country could no longer access sites including Yahoo!, Gmail and Facebook while using the VPNs. However, the downtime ended as access returned just a few days later. Iran’s Mehr news agency reported that the blackouts affected more than thirty million online users at the time.