U.S. Treasury Sanctions Hacking Group Backed by Iranian Intelligence

Iran hackers

The U.S. government on Thursday imposed sweeping sanctions against an Iranian threat actor backed by the country’s Ministry of Intelligence and Security (MOIS) for carrying out malware campaigns targeting Iranian dissidents, journalists, and international companies in the telecom and travel sectors.

According to the U.S. Treasury and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), the sanctions target Rana Intelligence Computing Company (or Rana), which the agencies said operated as a front for the threat group APT39 (aka Chafer or Remix Kitten), Iranian cyber espionage hacking collective active since 2014 known for its attacks on companies in the U.S. and the Middle East with an aim to pilfer personal information and advance Iran’s national security objectives.

To that effect, 45 individuals who served in various capacities while employed at the front company, including as managers, programmers, and hacking experts, have been implicated in the sanctions, which also prohibit U.S. companies from doing business with Rana and its employees.

“Masked behind its front company, Rana Intelligence Computing Company (Rana), the Government of Iran’s Ministry of Intelligence and Security…

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