Network Security, Network Security, Threat Management

Iranian internet attacked Saturday, knocked partially offline


An extensive, several-hour-long interruption to Iran’s telecom infrastructure and internet hit that took place on February 8 that was likely caused by a distributed denial of service (DDoS) attack.

The non-governmental organization Netblocks reported that at 11:45 a.m. local time Iranian internet connectivity from that country’s primary network operators was down by 25 percent eventually falling to a low of 75 percent below normal capacity at one point several hours later. This affected local cellular and land-line operations.

“Observations are consistent with a targeted disruption and no technical faults are evident at the present time,” Netblocks reported, adding in the local internet appeared to have been shut down by government authorities as they attempted to fend off the attack.

Iranian Ministry of Information and Communications Technology officials backed this theory tweeting on February 8 that the outage was the result of a DDoS attack that was eventually repelled by that country’s Digital Fortress cybersecurity defense system.

The tweet as translated by Google: "At 9:30 am today, due to a distributed denial of service attack, the Internet has been hampered by some fixed and mobile operators for an hour, which is now normalized with the intervention of the Dzhafa Shield and the efforts of its communications infrastructure partners."

“Iran has come under a serious cyber-attack which has disrupt much of the core online infrastructure across the country,” Tim Dunton, managing director of Nimbus Hosting told SC Media.

Even though Iranian/American tensions remain high, at this time neither Netblocks nor Iranian officials has blamed a specific entity for the attack. The NGO did note that Iran has recently undergone similar outages some attributed to external factors and others to state information controls to control public protests.

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