Iranian online collaboration forums incubating some of the world’s most significant cybersecurity incidents, hacking forces
A study produced by Cybersecurity firm Recorded Future suggests that the hacking culture heavily incubated by online forums and direct ties to the government have helped the country’s cyber forces generate some of the most significant and sophisticated attacks in the world. These have included crippling attacks against Saudi’s state oil company, massive defacement campaigns, and espionage campaigns against various political targets around the world. The finding demonstrated the role of one key forum with direct ties to the Iranian Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps as a showcasing opportunity for Iranian cyber contractors. This key forum was one of the few that remained open when the government cracked down on similar websites. It also describes how the forum was used to share information and collaborate on various hacking efforts, creating a kind of “Silicon Valley”-style innovation and sharing atmosphere. The forum was shut down in 2018, however, with sources citing its eventual involvement in online gambling, which is forbidden in Iran.