SULAIMANI (ESTA) — Iran’s civil defense chief accused the United States and Israel of being the likely culprits behind a cyberattack which disrupted gasoline sales across the country.
“We are still unable to say forensically, but analytically I believe it was carried out by the Zionist Regime, the Americans and their agents,” Gholamreza Jalali, head of civil defense which is in charge of cyber security, told state TV in an interview aired on Saturday.
Iran says it is on high alert for online assaults, which it has blamed in the past on its arch-foes United States and Israel. The United States and other Western powers meanwhile have accused Iran of trying to disrupt and break into their networks.
The disruptions on Tuesday came ahead of the second anniversary of an increase in fuel prices in November 2019 which led to widespread street protests in which hundreds were reported to have been killed by security forces.
In the past, Iran has been targeted by a series of cyberattacks such as one in July when the website of the transport ministry was taken down by what state media said was a “cyber disruption”.
Also in July, train services were delayed by apparent cyberattacks, with hackers posting the phone number of Supreme Leader Khamenei as the number to call for information.
Jalal said that, based on completed investigations, Iran was “certain” that the United States and Israel were behind the cyberattacks on Iran’s railroads in July and the Shahid Rajaee Port in May 2020.