Jul 20, 2018 - World

Report: Iran readying cyberattacks on U.S., Europeans, Middle East

Hassan Rouhani in white head covering, black shirt, before red background looking stern.

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani. Photo: Michael Gruber/Getty Images

Iranian hackers have laid the foundation to launch cyberattacks on electric grids, water plants, and health care and technology companies in the U.S., European countries, and in the Middle East, multiple senior U.S. officials tell NBC News' Courtney Kube, Carol E. Lee, Dan De Luce, and Ken Dilanian.

Why it matters: Iran has launched similar attacks before, like when it attacked U.S. banks and a dam in New York in what some security experts believe to have been in response to the 2010 Stuxnet attack on Iran, per Reuters. The U.S. is weighing whether striking back against Iran, if these extensive cyberattacks indeed come, would be the appropriate response. In preparation, the White House has reportedly readied sanctions against Tehran.

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