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Albania Cyberattack: Tirana accuses Iran

On 7 September 2022, Albania broke off diplomatic relations with Iran, accusing them of being behind the cyberattack that paralysed its public services this summer.

On 15 July 2022, a large-scale cyberattack took down several government services in Albania. Data was also stolen. AKSHI, Albania’s information system security agency, described it as a “synchronised and sophisticated cybercriminal attack from outside Albania”.

On 7 September 2022, Albania’s prime minister Edi Rama said he had “indisputable evidence” that Iran had engaged “four groups that enacted the aggression” Tirana broke off diplomatic relations with Teheran as a result.

Edi Rama also said that the cyberattack “had failed its purpose… All systems came back fully operational and there was no irreversible wiping of data”. Adrienne Watson, spokesperson for the United States National Security Council, also attributed this “reckless and irresponsible cyberattack” to Iran.

“We strongly condemn such malicious cyber activities designed to destabilise and harm the security of an ally, and disrupt the daily lives of citizens. NATO and its allies are supporting Albania in strengthening its cyber defence capabilities to withstand and repel such malicious cyber activities in the future,” the North Atlantic Council, which includes representatives from the 30 NATO member countries, said in a statement.

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