NPR : News

Filed Under:

Attacks On U.S. Banks' Websites Seen As Work Of Iran

Sophisticated hacking attacks on U.S. banks in recent months have distinctive qualities that are leading investigators to believe another nation may be behind the assault. The likely suspect is Iran, which officials believe may be trying to even the score for American hacking of its nuclear program.

At least nine U.S. financial institutions have been hit since September; more attacks are expected. And part of what makes them suspicious is that they seem calculated not to steal account data or money, but instead to disrupt the banking system.

"There is no doubt within the U.S. government that Iran is behind these attacks," former Commerce and State Department official James A. Lewis tells The New York Times, which reported the story Wednesday. Lewis is a computer security expert at the Center for Strategic and International Studies.

The distributed denial of service attacks, which seek to overload an online system's ability to respond to requests, targeted Bank of America, Citigroup, Wells Fargo, U.S. Bancorp, PNC, Capital One, BB&T, HSBC, and Fifth Third Bank, the Times reports.

NPR's Tom Gjelten filed a Newscast report in which he explained more about the group behind the attacks:

"A group calling itself the al-Qassam cyber fighters has taken credit for the attacks, saying they're protesting the anti-Islam video posted on YouTube a few months ago. But the group could be just a front. In its latest posting, the group says: 'Rulers and officials of American banks must expect our massive attacks! From now on, none will be safe.'"

Tom will discuss the case on All Things Considered this afternoon. We'll update this post with more information as it comes in.

Copyright 2013 National Public Radio. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

NPR

'Baskets' Takes Zach Galifianakis From French Clown School To The Rodeo Ring

The comic, who plays a rodeo clown in his new FX comedy series, says he is "not creeped out by clowns." Galifianakis is also the creator of the Emmy Award-winning web comedy series Between Two Ferns.
NPR

The Shocking Truth About America's Ethanol Law: It Doesn't Matter (For Now)

Ted Cruz doesn't like the law that requires the use of ethanol in gasoline. So what would happen if it was abolished? The surprising answer: not much, probably.
NPR

Chris Christie To Drop Out Of Republican Race For President

The New Jersey governor may simply have missed his window by declining to run in 2012. Christie threw everything at getting traction in Iowa and New Hampshire but fell short in both.
NPR

Twitter Tries A New Kind Of Timeline By Predicting What May Interest You

Twitter has struggled to attract new users. Its latest effort at rejuvenation is a new kind of timeline that predicts which older posts you might not want to miss and displays them on top.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.