U.S. arrests two Iranian cyber criminals and five Chinese spies

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The U.S. government has arrested two Iranian cyber spies accused of stealing U.S. intelligence information and selling it on the digital black market and five Chinese nationals working for Chinese intelligence.

On Wednesday, U.S. representatives stated that Hooman Heidarian and Mehdi Farhadi were arrested on charges of carrying out hacking operations against the digital infrastructure of the U.S. government, foreign universities, and non-profit organizations.

The U.S. Department of Justice announced in a statement that the cyber criminals stole large quantities of data, including national security, aviation, and space data, unannounced scientific research, and peaceful nuclear information. The statement went on to say the criminals sold that information on the digital black market.

Earlier, Justice officials announced the names of five Chinese nationals accused of carrying out acts of electronic espionage and working for Chinese intelligence.

Assistant Prosecutor General for National Security John Demers stated that, “Recent cases show that at least four countries allow cyber criminals to attack individuals and companies from all over the world,” referring to Iran, China, Russia, and North Korea.

He added that these criminals are also working for their governments gathering information on human rights activists and defendants in addition to gathering other intelligence information.