On Saturday Iran’s intelligence minister Heydar Moslehi said, that authorities had arrested several “nuclear spies” who were working to derail Tehran’s nuclear programme through cyberspace.
He was quoted on state television’s website as saying Iran had “prevented the enemies’ destructive activity.” Without saying how many people were arrested or when.
His remarks came against the backdrop of reports that the Stuxnet worm is mutating and wreaking mayhem on computerised industrial equipment in Iran and had already infected 30,000 IP addresses.
Moslehi said: “I assure all citizens that the intelligence apparatus currently has complete supervision on cyberspace and will not allow any leak or destruction of our country’s nuclear activities”.
“We have always faced the destructive action of these (spy) services and a number of nuclear spies have been arrested,” he said.
Analysts say Stuxnet may have been designed to target Iran’s nuclear facilities, especially the Russian-built first atomic power plant in the southern city of Bushehr.
Officials have denied that Bushehr was among the addresses penetrated by the worm, but acknowledged that some personal computers of the plant’s personnel had been infected.