back to article What's Farsi for 'as subtle as a nuke through a window'? Foreign diplomats in Iran hit by renewed Remexi nasty

A newly uncovered spyware-slinging operation appears to have been targeting foreign diplomats in Iran for more than three years. Researchers at Kaspersky Lab said this week that a new build of the Remexi software nasty, first seen in 2015, has been spotted lurking on multiple machines within Iran, mostly those located within …

  1. Wellyboot Silver badge

    renegade Mid-East nation?

    I'd rate Iran pretty much par for the course in the mid-east, It's 40 years since they moved from very pro-west to militant anti-(anything not them I suppose). In the same time frame most of the other countries thereabouts have also had big internal changes.

    Spying on diplomats isn't a news story, it's part of the game.

    1. DougS Silver badge

      Re: renegade Mid-East nation?

      The younger Iranians are much less anti-western than the old guard, so the pendulum may swing the other way (if we can stop our "old guard" like Trump from forcing a confrontation before they eventually take power)

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: renegade Mid-East nation?

        As much as I dislike Turnip's mouth, Obomber killed a few tens of thousand more than Mr vegetable head has in the same time frame. Old guard - is corruption and war for oil - hasn't changed in over 70 years, and not going to. Office filler name has no effect.

    2. TheVogon Silver badge

      Re: renegade Mid-East nation?

      "It's 40 years since they moved from very pro-west to militant anti-(anything not them I suppose)"

      I guess it's to some extent understandable when you have the USA funding and arming a terrorist state on your borders that has a history of repeated attacks on you.

    3. Nick Kew Silver badge

      Re: renegade Mid-East nation?

      The pro-western government was a despot imposed on them by the West after deposing their elected leader in 1953 (for oil - back then "we" were less reticent about saying so).

      After the 1979 revolution, the West used (and backed) its regional henchman Saddam Hussein to attack them. Indeed, all of Saddam's worst atrocities date from when he was doing the West's bidding.

      They had another pro-Western elected leader in the 1990s, but the West (especially the US) turned the cold shoulder. Is it any wonder they look on us with suspicion?

  2. Pascal Monett Silver badge

    "researchers pointed to clues such as the use of Farsi language in encryption keys"

    Yeah, those Russkies sure know how to point people elsewhere.

    In other news, I've always wondered what BITS was for. I guess now I know.

    In other, other news, once again we have proof that anything with the word "Intelligent" in its name is NOT your friend.

    1. A.P. Veening

      Re: "researchers pointed to clues such as the use of Farsi language in encryption keys"

      "Yeah, those Russkies sure know how to point people elsewhere."

      Have you considered the Chinese? Or the Israelis?

      1. Version 1.0 Silver badge

        Re: "researchers pointed to clues such as the use of Farsi language in encryption keys"

        Government offensive attacks are certainly possible but I've noticed for years that when we start doing business in a new country it takes only a couple of weeks before the spam and infection laden attachments start arriving from that area. In poorer countries a lot of copies of Windows are old, unlicensed, and not running any AV software - our agents may be using good systems but their family and all their friends are using cheap stuff and I suspect the majority machines are infected at least once.

        If you are in a swamp than the Alligators are a problem, but it's the Mosquitoes that bite the most.

  3. This post has been deleted by its author

  4. Dr. G. Freeman

    What's Farsi for 'as subtle as a nuke through a window'

    به عنوان ظریف به عنوان یک هسته از طریق یک پنجره, if you were wondering.

    1. Spacedinvader
      Pint

      Re: What's Farsi for 'as subtle as a nuke through a window'

      I was. Came to comments section to not be disappointed.

      Have one on me --->

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    infallible proof

    /researchers pointed to clues such as the use of Farsi language in encryption keys that suggest Iranian operatives are behind the attack./

    Yes because it's impossible for any other country to embed Farsi-like encryption keys into software. I hope the other clues are more compelling.

    It's like a riderless horse returning to the castle with a torn piece of enemy uniform attached to it being proof your enemy abducted your princess and is absolute justification for war.

    Or watching a movie showing prayer rugs in the desert is absolute proof terrorists are crossing your southern wall-less border.

    1. Wellyboot Silver badge

      Re: infallible proof

      >>>absolute justification for war<<< Circumstantial evidence (& guesswork) is enough for politicians to work with - Remember the 'Iraq has WMD & can attack the UK in 45 mins' line from 2003, that was a fib up there with Anthony Edens 'Peacekeeping mission' over suez

      1. not.known@this.address Bronze badge
        Mushroom

        Re: infallible proof

        Wellyboot, you might be too young to remember Saddam Hussein standing in front of a huge military audience somewhere saying "We don't need to steal American kryton triggers, we already have enough of our own!", or like most of the world you might have forgotten.

        Just because he didn't use them doesn't mean he didn't have them...

        1. Waseem Alkurdi Silver badge

          Re: infallible proof

          Care to provide proof? Something like this must've been taped by at least one reliable news source.

  6. Jimmy2Cows

    Seems like standard diplomatic practice

    Surely every nation is at least trying to do this to all foreign diplomats on their soil.

    Just because they've not been caught yet, doesn't mean it's not happening everywhere.

    1. CAPS LOCK Silver badge

      Re: Seems like standard diplomatic practice

      Indeed. I like the Russian carved Eagle thing that was completely passive and used a microwave beam to listen to sounds in the room. It was invented by Leon Theremin of err, Theremin fame.

      1. David Shaw

        Re: Seems like standard diplomatic practice

        Yes, it was probably a retroreflector(*) that modulated the reflected RF, based upon the local ambassadors' audio changing the cavity dimensions slightly, almost the first RFID. Лев Термен also seemed to have invented remote infra-red beam bugging, attacking the windows of various western embassies in Moscow. Wikipedia mentions further that he first thought of (and demonstrated) interlaced scan TV, as used in PAL & NTSC, further fame!

        (*) nice picture here of a quarter wave antenna & microphone in "the Thing" https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/6/66/Bugged-great-seal-open.jpg

        1. Wellyboot Silver badge

          Re: Seems like standard diplomatic practice

          There are some really clever buggers about.

    2. BrownishMonstr

      Re: Seems like standard diplomatic practice

      Shirley not. Our trusted friends, the Americans, will never spy on their own friends, like the Germans.

      1. Wexford

        Re: Seems like standard diplomatic practice

        The Americans do it to protect us. And stop calling me Shirley.

      2. Mark Exclamation
        Joke

        Re: Seems like standard diplomatic practice

        On the contrary, the Germans are just as likely to spy on their own friends!

      3. M.V. Lipvig
        Trollface

        Re: Seems like standard diplomatic practice

        Sure we will. I'm an American spying on the membership of El Reg right now, or after reading some of these comments, perhaps I mean El Al Reg? Sit tight now, ignore that roar you hear getting louder and louder, it's just, um, it's Amazon delivering a, uhhh, a fruit basket. Yeah yeah, a fruit basket, that's the ticket.

        Troll icon because, well, you know...

POST COMMENT House rules

Not a member of The Register? Create a new account here.

  • Enter your comment

  • Add an icon

Anonymous cowards cannot choose their icon

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2019