Israeli gov’t websites back online after crashing from Iranian attack

Iran-affiliated Black Shadow group takes credit for largest cyberattack on Israel.

By David Hellerman, World Israel News

Numerous Israeli government websites went down on Monday in what appears to be the largest cyberattack in the country’s history. Access to most of the sites has been restored.

According to an Iranian media report cited by the Jerusalem Post, a hacker group affiliated with Iran called Black Shadow has claimed responsibility.

Officials in Israel’s National Cyber Directorate, which declared a state of emergency, said they are addressing the crash, but could not elaborate on its cause. Authorities were also checking to see if key infrastructure, such as water and electricity facilities were also compromised.

The attack hit websites using the domain used by government ministries. According to reports, subdomain pages continued working despite the home pages being knocked offline.

Affected websites included the Prime Ministers Office, and various ministries, including health, justice, welfare and interior.

A defense official told Haaretz it was the biggest cyberattack on Israel.

In November, the Black Shadow group uploaded and leaked personal information from the database of Atraf, an Israeli LGBTQ dating service. Atraf, which had 690,000 members, refused to pay a $1 million ransom.

Last year, cybersecurity company VirusTotal reported that Israel was the country most-targeted for ransomware attacks, noting a 600 percent increase in attacks.

This is a developing story.