Cyber experts at Homeland Security and Idaho National Laboratory analysing the worm to prevent attacks on critical systems
It has been revealed that cyber experts analysed the Stuxnet computer worm – the virus believed to have sabotaged Iran’s nuclear programme – in the Idaho National Laboratory.
According to a Reuters report, reporters were allowed to take a tour of the malware laboratory in the first major DHS media tour at the Idaho Falls facility.
The sophisticated Stuxnet worm targets industrial control systems built by German engineering company Siemens.
The reporters were shown demonstrations of how cyber intrusions can attack computer networks of industries, according to the report.
It added that it is in this nondescript malware laboratory that Homeland Security and Idaho National Laboratory analysts are trying to find out ways to fight the worm.
Earlier, Ralph Langner, one of the first researchers to show the working of the sophisticated malware, had revealed that he believes Mossad is involved, but the US is the leading source of the worm.
The worm first came into light late last year after studies showed a likelihood of a "nation state" to be behind the worm meant to target Iran’s nuclear programme.
Though Iran’s uranium enrichment programme is known to have been delayed, Iranian officials have denied that the virus caused any major delays to its nuclear power programme. However, they have admitted that the worm infected staff computers.
The origin of the worm is still unknown.
Langner said the US is the main driver behind the creation of the worm.
Langner said, "My opinion is that Mossad [Israel’s intelligence agency] is involved."
"There is only one leading source, and that is the United States."
Langner added the worm works by showing fabricated readings to trick human operators who think that the machines are working correctly, while the worm affects the processes. He also said that the developers had access to sensitive protected information.
Langner said, "It was engineered by people who obviously had inside information."
"They probably also knew the shoe size of the operator."
In April, Iran claimed that Siemens helped the US and Israel to launch the computer worm Stuxnet against its nuclear facilities.
Reports in Iran quoted Iran civilian defense commander Gholam Reza Jalali as saying that investigations have proved that the US and Israel were behind Stuxnet attack. He added that timely action taken by Iranian experts had averted a nuclear disater in Iran.
Jalali blamed Siemens, whose equipment and software is used in Iran’s nuclear power plants, for leaking information about a Siemens-designed control system, Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA), to the US and Israel.