Failed Iranian cyberattack aimed at poisoning Israel’s water supply

Had the recent cyberattack on Israel’s water supply not been thwarted at the outset, it threatened to poison the water with quantities of chlorine or some other dangerous substance and bring about a shortage of water in the middle of the covid-19 epidemic. The head of Israel’s National Cyber Directorate Yigal Unna told a conference on Thursday. He said that a “humanitarian disaster” had been averted. The attack, attributed to Iran, resulted in massive cyber-disruption of the Iranian port of Bandar Abbas.

The Financial Times reported on Monday:
In early April, municipal workers at a water pumping station in central Israel noticed a warning from their computer systems — a few pumps had been malfunctioning, turning off and on without being told to. A piece of Iranian-written code had travelled around the world, passing through servers in the US and Europe to hide its origins, and finally to the commercially manufactured software controllers that operated the water pumps, according to four Israeli officials and a western intelligence official briefed on the findings. Its suspected goal? To trick the computers into increasing the amount of chlorine added to the treated water that flows to Israeli homes.

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