A computer virus in Lebanon is threatening to destroy the country’s banking system, the Lebanese Daily Star reported.
The virus, called Gauss, is rare in size and focus. The size of the attack is so large that experts say only a nation-state has the means to create an attack of this sophistication. The attack was uniquely focused on Lebanon, which experts also say is rare, raising questions about who would want to target the country.
Gauss infiltrates computers and steals sensitive information, which it sends to bases in other countries. The cyber security of the Lebanese banking system, has proved inadequate to combat the sophisticated virus.
There is still much unknown about the virus. If it can successfully undermine Lebanese bank accounts and communication services, it has the potential to destabilise the fragile state of peace in the country.
The Russian company which discovered Gauss says that it is likely just one of many cyber-attacks currently being executed under the radar in the Middle East.