US Senator: Iran’s cyber attack on New York dam was ‘shot across the bow’

The US stands to publicly charge Iranians for a cyber attack on a New York dam.

By: AP

A cyberattack by Iranians hackers on a dam in the New York City suburbs was a “shot across the bow” of the United States and should be met with tougher sanctions against Iran, US Senator Charles Schumer said Friday.

In 2013, Iranian hackers accessed the control system at the Bowman Avenue Dam, a small flood-control structure. The intrusion prompted a federal investigation.

“Now it looks clear that the Iranians did it,” Schumer said. “What were they doing? They were sending a shot across our bow. They were saying that we can damage, seriously damage, our critical infrastructure and put the lives and property of people at risk.”

Schumer confirmed that a federal indictment is expected in the case as soon as next month. It wasn’t clear whether the indictment from the US attorney’s office in Manhattan would charge specific people within the Iranian government or publicly name Iran as being behind the attack.

A spokesman for Iran’s mission to the United Nations did not immediately respond to an email and telephone request for comment Friday.

At a news briefing Thursday, State Department spokesman Mark Toner declined to specifically comment on the prospects that Iran would be charged in the cyberattack, but said: “I would say broadly that we obviously take all, seriously all such malicious activity in cyberspace. We’re going to continue to use all the tools at our disposal to deter, detect, counter and mitigate that kind of activity.”