The White House responded in its strongest terms yet that they had no participation in leaking information on the Iranian cyber attack. Press Secretary Jay Carney said yesterday “Any suggestion that the White House has leaked sensitive information for political purposes has no basis in fact and has been denied by the authors themselves, as one of the authors of the New York Times story on Obama’s counterterrorism record said, ‘The notion that the White House prompted the story or controlled our reporting and writing is absurd.’”
This continues the political firestorm that was set in motion by the recent New York Times article about the cyber program developed over the course of the last 18 months, as was stated in the initial article. Anonymous sources included “current and former American, European and Israeli officials”, who refused to be identified due to the “highly classified” nature of the program.
Outside experts were engaged as well, including Carey Nachenberg, a vice president of Symantec, who recently discussed the errant worm at Stanford. “The code itself is 50 times as big as the typical computer worm.”
The code in question is part of the cyberweapons program, Olympic Games, begun during the Bush Administration. President Obama accelerated the cyberattacks against Iran “even after an element of the program accidentally became public in the summer of 2010 because of a programming error that allowed it to escape Iran’s Natanz plant and sent it around the world on the Internet.”
According to the Times, this is the first time the US has used repeated cyberattacks against another country, which was seen as the only means to stop Iran’s continued pursuit of nuclear weapons.