Stuxnet, widely believed to be a virus released by the Israeli government to neutralize the Iranian nuclear program, has been infecting computers in India, according to the ministry of IT and Communications.
It however clarified that the virus — that hampers the functioning of Siemens industrial controllers used in the Iranian nuclear programe — has not been found on India’s defense equipment. Most of the sightings have been on ordinary computers, on which it is harmless.
The sophistication and the prevalence of the virus among Iranian nuclear weapons facilities had led to anti-virus firm Kaspersky Labs stating that the virus was most probably the creation of a government, rather than a group of miscreants acting on their own.
The virus, that started coming to the fore in June 2009, targets a particular industrial control software created by the German engineering firm Siemens which is known to be in use in Irans nuclear program.
“Alerts and advisories about the virus threats including such sophisticated virus are being issued regularly by the Indian Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-In). Measures to be taken to detect infected systems, dis-infect the same and prevent further propagation are also and being advised regularly to all critical sector organizations in the country,” Sachin Pilot, junior communications and IT minister said in a statement.
Government said it is working with Internet providers such as Airtel and Reliance to track infected systems and dis-infect them.
“Measures to be taken to detect infected systems, dis-infect the same and prevent further propagation are also and being advised regularly to all critical sector organizations in the country,” it added.