TEHRAN, Iran -- A senior Iranian military official has claimed the country's nuclear facilities are immune to cyber attack.
Gholam Reza Jalali, who heads an Iranian military unit in charge of combating sabotage, was quoted Monday by the official IRNA news agency as saying that Iran and its nuclear facilities possess the technology and knowledge to deal with malicious software, according to The Associated Press.
He did not specify what steps have been taken since 2010, when a virus known as Stuxnet disrupted controls of some nuclear centrifuges. Tehran says its scientists neutralized the malware before it caused serious damage.
Iran has reported other cyber attacks since, including an infection in April 2011 dubbed "Stars." Jalali said that Iran also fought a spy virus called "Doku," without providing details.
Iran's claim comes amid rising tensions between the Islamic Republic and the West. As a tightening web of international measures aims at forcing the Islamic Republic to scrap sensitive nuclear work, a string of events have made it look to the outside world like an undeclared "soft war" was under way.
Apart from the Stuxnet computer virus that attacked centrifuges at the Natanz enrichment facility, which Iran accused Israel and the United States for, the U.S. has accused Tehran's shadowy Quds Force in a plot to assassinate the Saudi ambassador to Washington.
In late 2011, the United States lost a spy drone in Iran, unmasking an aggressive surveillance program.
There have also been unexplained explosions at an Iranian missile depot and four nuclear scientists have been killed in Iran-- the latest on Wednesday.
Iran reacted to those events and the stepped-up economic sanctions as if under siege. It threatened to close the Strait of Hormuz, a major oil shipping lane.
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The Associated Press, Reuters and msnbc.com staff contributed to this report.