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Successive cyberattacks with links to entities that are loosely tied to state actors have ramped up focus on cybersecurity technologies. After Ukraine’s largest telecom operator saw its network conductivity cut by 90% for several days last week, service at 70% of Iran’s gas stations were disrupted this morning. Both of these attacks were undertaken by actors aligned with each country’s geopolitical adversaries. Organizations in the US’s private and public sector have not been immune to cyber breaches at this scale in the past, and the upcoming passage of the National Defense Authorization Act for this fiscal year will seek to shore up the Department of Defense’s ability to negate and respond to state-backed hackers targeting American assets.

Related ETF: First Trust NASDAQ Cybersecurity ETF (CIBR)

On Monday, services were disrupted at up to 70% of Iran’s gasoline stations, the result of an apparent cyberattack on a critical pillar of the country’s energy infrastructure. Iran’s Oil Minister Javad Owji confirmed Tehran’s suspicion of a cyberattack, while Israeli hacker group Gonjeshke Darande (which translates to “predatory sparrow”) took responsibility for the mass disabling of gas pumps. Unsurprisingly, the hackers stated that their targeting of Iran was a response to the aggression of the Islamic Republic and its proxies in the region. Per The Times of Israel, this is the second time Gonjeshke Darande claimed responsibility for a cyberattack that targeted Iran’s fuel distribution system and last year forced the Iranian state-owned Khuzestan Steel Co. to halt production after the systems of three plants were compromised.

This incident comes just a week after Ukraine’s largest telecom operator, Kyivstar, was slammed by a sophisticated cyberattack of Russian origin that cut nearly 90% of its data connectivity. The scale of this outage is massive and, according to Reuters, the largest inflicted on Ukraine since the start of Russia’s formal invasion of the Ukrainian mainland in February 2022. Kyivstar serves nearly 25 million mobile subscribers and more than 1 million home internet customers. The temporary shattering of Kyivstar’s network kept many civilians from receiving alerts of…

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