Hackers Derail Iran’s Train System, Post Supreme Leader’s Phone Number as Help Line

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Photo: AFP PHOTO/FARS NEWS (Getty Images)

Cyberattacks reportedly incapacitated Iran’s railway system on Friday, causing “unprecedented chaos” at stations throughout the country, according to state media.

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The hackers, whoever they are, also reportedly trolled the nation’s Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei, posting his phone number as “the number to call for information” on train station message boards, Reuters reports. According to some Iranian outlets, the number, 64411, was displayed on screens in train stations and redirected to Ayatolla Khamenei’s office when dialed.

The railway’s website, local ticket offices, and cargo services have all apparently been affected, the news outlet reports.

There isn’t otherwise a whole lot of information about this incident, though local reporting would appear to suggest that trains have been massively delayed but not totally stalled.

Attacks on transportation networks and hubs are semi-frequent, but they’re not always this bad. In the U.S., there are semi-frequent ransomware attacks targeting transportation agencies and, last month, someone hacked into the MTA’s networks, though the attack did not affect the agency operationally in any capacity.

Iran, on the other hand, is pretty much always getting hacked by someone (or being accused of hacking somebody). The country’s ongoing cyber feuds with its neighbor Israel have resulted in numerous instances of transport hubs getting cooked—including a large hack on an Iranian port last spring.

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