Embargo to Espionage: A Cursory Review of the Shamoon Virus - Page 2
The real impact I’d suggest is really further isolation of the Iranian state particularly from its neighbors. I’m always amazed at the perpetual squabbling that goes on throughout the region and this is simply another example.
If we examined the traditional investigative process of looking for the means, motive and opportunity in a criminal investigation, we have plenty to go on here that further suggest this is an Iranian state action. First if we consider the means, well, the state has the source code for the original Flame virus. No one else, aside from the original creator, had that code. Second, if I look at the opportunity, this is in abundance and certainly not a stretch to accept. Finally, the motive; what could possibly be the motive here to attack oil and gas producers? Could it be the general vitriol exhibited between the Iranian government and quite possibly every other modern, civilized, state entity in the world? Or, could it be because the European Union inaugurated its embargo on Iranian oil beginning in July 2012, the most wide-reaching impediment to the Iranian economy of the recent sanctions? Did you know that the European Union, as a market, is bigger than the United States? This is really significant for Iran when you consider that oil accounts for 80% of Iran’s total exports.
Who is really responsible may be a mystery; however, a previously unknown group of computer hackers who call themselves the "Cutting Sword of Justice" have claimed responsibility. Sounds more like something from a comic book and given the lackluster effect they should change their name to the “Butter Knife of Uber-Doom” or something like that. Make no mistake about it though; I’m not suggesting we don’t take this event seriously. Eventually the training wheels will come off and these cyber-weapons and cyber-threats will become more of a problem.