U.S. Bank Cyber Attacks Attributed to Iranian Government

According to the New York Times, the ongoing denial of service attacks against U.S. banks that have been attributed to a group called the Izz ad-Din al-Qassam Cyber Fighters are actually the work of the Iranian government.

“Since September, intruders have caused major disruptions to the online banking sites of Bank of America, Citigroup, Wells Fargo, U.S. Bancorp, PNC, Capital One, Fifth Third Bank, BB&T and HSBC,” UPI reports. “The hackers used distributed denial of service attacks that direct large volumes of traffic to a site until it collapses, thus denying customers access.”

“‘There is no doubt within the U.S. government that Iran is behind these attacks,’ said James A. Lewis, a former official in the State and Commerce Departments and a computer security expert at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington,” write The New York Times’ Nicole Perlroth and Quentin Hardy. “Mr. Lewis said the amount of traffic flooding American banking sites was ‘multiple times’ the amount that Russia directed at Estonia in a monthlong online assault in 2007 that nearly crippled the Baltic nation.”

“These attacks on banks show no signs of ceasing,” notes CNET News’ Dara Kerr. “A December security report by McAfee warned that mass cyberattacks on U.S. banks would continue throughout 2013. The security company also said that 2013 will see a rise in higher-level professional hacking groups that will aim to promote military, religious, political, and ‘extreme’ campaign attacks.”

Jeff Goldman
Jeff Goldman has been a technology journalist for more than 20 years and an eSecurity Planet contributor since 2009.

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