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Cyberattack disrupts fuel distribution at gas stations across Iran: Report

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
Cars and motorbikes queue to fill up at a service station in Iran's capital Tehran on October 26, 2021, amid a nationwide disruption of the petrol distribution system. (Photo by AFP)

A cyberattack has reportedly targeted gas stations across Iran, causing widespread disruption in the system managing fuel subsidies nationwide.

“The disruption in the refueling system at the gas stations, which has been causing problems in the refueling process of vehicles for hours, has been caused by a cyberattack,” Nournews, a website close to Iran’s Supreme National Security Council (SNSC), reported on Tuesday.

It added that technical experts were working to solve the issue and the refueling process in the gas stations would return to normal soon.

Details of the cyberattack are under investigation and further information will be released after a final conclusion is reached.

Earlier, Ali Forouzandeh, a spokesman for Iran’s Ministry of Petroleum, said the refueling process had been interrupted due to disruption in the gas pumps that read the smart cards used to purchase rationed fuel.

He told reporters that people could still buy gas at unsubsidized rates.

The official added the National Iranian Oil Products Distribution Company had disconnected the smart distribution system after the disruption happened.

Meanwhile, a senior Iranian lawmaker said Parliament Speaker Mohammad Baqer Qalibaf had ordered an investigation into the case.

Head of the Parliament’s Energy Committee Fereydoun Hassanvand also rejected as “sheer lies” reports that a possible increase in fuel price had caused the disruption.

Millions of drivers rely on the fuel cards that the administration uses to manage the distribution of subsidized gasoline.

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