Did cyber worm sabotage Iran's nuke program?

Expert's findings may prove US and Israel may have a far more sophisticated cyber-warfare program than previously thought.

By REUTERS
December 2, 2011 08:56
1 minute read.
Analysts work at NCCIC

cyber attack 311 R. (photo credit: REUTERS)

 
X

Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief

UPGRADE YOUR JPOST EXPERIENCE FOR 5$ PER MONTH Show me later Don't show it again

A cyber warfare expert claims he has linked the Stuxnet computer virus that attacked Iran's nuclear program in 2010 to Conficker, a mysterious "worm" that surfaced in late 2008 and infected millions of PCs.

Conficker was used to open back doors into computers in Iran, then infect them with Stuxnet, according to research from John Bumgarner, a retired US Army special-operations veteran and former intelligence officer.

Be the first to know - Join our Facebook page.


RELATED:
'Turkish hackers preparing cyber attack on Israeli sites'

"Conficker was a door kicker," said Bumgarner, chief technology officer for the US Cyber Consequences Unit, a non-profit group that studies the impact of cyber threats. "It built out an elaborate smoke screen around the whole world to mask the real operation, which was to deliver Stuxnet."

While it is widely believed that the United States and Israel were behind Stuxnet, Bumgarner wouldn't comment on whether he believes the Americans and Israelis also unleashed Conficker, one of the most virulent pieces of so-called malware ever detected. He wouldn't name the attackers he believes were behind the two programs, saying the matter was too sensitive to discuss.

The White House and the FBI declined to comment. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's office, which oversees Israel's intelligence agencies, also declined comment.

If Bumgarner's findings, which couldn't immediately be independently confirmed, are correct then it shows that the United States and Israel may have a far more sophisticated cyber-warfare program than previously thought. It could also be a warning to countries other than Iran that they might be vulnerable to attacks.
Click here for full Jpost coverage of the Iranian threat

Related Content

Bushehr nuclear Iranian
August 5, 2014
Iran and the bomb: The future of negotiations

By YONAH JEREMY BOB