German intelligence warns: Iranian cyber spies targeting dissidents in Germany

The targeted attempts are being made by hacking group Charming Kitten using social engineering tools.

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Germany’s domestic intelligence service, the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution (BfV), has warned that state-sponsored Iranian cyber spies are targeting Iranian dissident organisations and individuals residing in Germany. The agency reported having concrete evidence of targetted attempts on Iranian opposition in exile being made by a group known as Charming Kitten, who have been employing social engineering activities.

It is alleged that Charming Kitten is an Iranian state-sponsored hacking group by several entities, including Google, Recorded Future and Proofpoint.

In January, a similar warning was issued by Britain’s National Cyber Security Centre, alleging that the hackers were adopting sophisticated social engineering techniques and false personal connections with victims to build a rapport and compromise their targets.