U.S-INDICTED MABNA GROUP DIRECTED BY MINISTRY OF INTELLIGENCE

Previous, ICNA has reported on U.S. indictments and accusations of Iranian hackers and other cyber activists, and today we report also another indicitment of more Iranian cyber activists. The list of indicted people is:

  • Gholamreza Rafatnejad
  • Ehsan Mohammadi
  • Abdollah Karima
  • Mostafa Sadeghi
  • Seyed Ali Mirkarimi
  • Mohammed Reza Sabahi
  • Roozbeh Sabahi
  • Abuzar Gohari Moqadam
  • Sajjad Tahmasebi

 For some time now it was clear that one or more groups was coordinating cyber attacks wihtin Iran, and now it is clear that a key organization within that program is the Mabna Insititute. It is interesting to know that the person indicted before, Behzad Mesri, also seems to be linked to this program. U.S. treasury has included him in the list of Mabna associates. The command and control structure of this organization is not clear but a source of ICNA suggested that there is a strong link between the Ministry of Intelligence and Mabna institute. If this claim is true then a question that can be raised is, in this sensitive point of time, when the U.S. has many times made clear its position in relation to Iran and its activities online and in the Middle East region, and when JCPOA keeps the minds of senior politicians not only in Iran and America but also in Europe and the world, why would the government of Iran want to risk being linked to such activities. Could it not be said that the government of Iran is sponsoring criminal activity online? Because it is difficult to believe that such a link between the Ministry of Intelligence and Mabna can exist if the government does not know about it because the Ministry of Intelligence is part of the government. In Persian we say that a knife does not cut its own handle, but in this case we should consider that perhaps here the handle has cut the knife. 

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