Just one month after reports surfaced that Iran was hit with yet another cyber attack, the country is back in the spotlight, this time being blamed for a series of cyber attacks on U.S. banks.
According to Reuters, the websites of Bank of America and JPMorgan Chase unexpectedly went down last week, with a source familiar with the issue telling the news agency that “massive denial-of-service attacks” were to blame.
But as the banks continue to investigate, some are already speculating that the attacks were a product of Iranian hackers, retaliating for U.S. and European sanctions against Iran’s financial institutions.
“I don’t believe that these were just hackers who were skilled enough to break in to cause disruption,” said Sen. Joe Lieberman (I-Conn.) in an interview that aired on C-SPAN. “I think that this was done by Iran and [its army] the Quds Force.”
Calling it a counterattack, Lieberman said that Islamist extremists had announced their bank breach plans on a website just days before the attacks were carried out, adding that the New York Stock Exchange was another intended cyber target.
Lieberman went on to say that while it “wasn’t a very sophisticated attack,” the incident serves as a “powerful example” of America’s network vulnerabilities.
But according to Iran’s Fars News Agency, the U.S.’ charges are false, and the Middle Eastern country is not at fault.
“Iran has not hacked the U.S. banks,” Gholam Reza Jalali, director of Iran’s Civil Defense Organization, told FNA on Sunday.
Further refuting the claims, Jalali advised that the attack accusations were “aimed at demonizing Iran in cyberspace to portray the country as a global threat to cybersecurity and justify the U.S. and Israeli cyber attacks on Iran.”