As well as branches of local Government, banks were also compromised before Christmas 2018. According to Sky News, the coordinated attacks took place on December 23. In a statement, the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) said it was “working with victims ad advising on mitigation measures”.
At the time, reports suggested around 10 MPs and peers’ mobile phone numbers had data from them compromised.
Thousands of employees had their details stolen, which include the Post Office chief executive Paula Vennels, the NCSC said.
Sky reported that experts in California claimed the attacks were connected to the Iranian Revolutionary Guard.
Lewis Henderson, vice-president of threat intelligence at cybersecurity company Glasswall, said: “As we’ve seen, you can do anything influence elections, in particular. You can start to impersonate people within that government as well and be utterly convincing.
“The levels of trust that the global address list puts in place is completely eroded once you’ve lost that information, once it’s out there in the hands of the attackers.
“We know that they could be impersonating members of our own government and starting to alter and disrupt communications.”
Emily Orton, co-founder of Darktrace, said we lived in the “Wild West of hacking”.
She added: “If you speak to any of the critical infrastructure providers in this country or any other, you will see that they are dealing with attacks like this pretty much on a daily basis.”
The latest claims come after Iran faced new sanctions from the US as floods sweep the country.
Iranian officials say this amounts to economic “terrorism” and is negatively impacting aid efforts.
US authorities are considering placing fresh sanctions on Iran, as Tehran officials say the resulting pressure could cause significant disruption to flood aid.
The country is currently experiencing some of its heaviest rain in a decade, resulting flash floods have seen rivers burst their banks and torrents of water running through towns and villages.