Iran recruited Israeli civilians for spying, intelligence missions

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Israel’s Shin Bet foiled an Iranian honeypot network that aimed to recruit unsuspecting Israeli civilians to gather intelligence and commit terror attacks under the guise of criminal activities, the Israeli Security Agency announced Thursday.

The Iranian network turned to Israelis through social media and employment websites.  Speaking in Hebrew, English, and Arabic, the network operatives introduced themselves as salespeople or real estate agents and, in some cases, sought out Israelis who expressed interest in online dating.

The network also attempted to reach out to families of fallen soldiers and Israelis taken hostage by Hamas on October 7.

Israeli civilians helped expand Iran’s intelligence pool

The Israelis were then sent on paid reconnaissance missions, gathering information on certain addresses and taking photos of sites of interest to the operatives in an attempt to expand the Islamic Republic’s intelligence pool on Israel.

A man holds up a poster of the late Iranian Major-General Qassem Soleimani next to a burning Israeli flag as Iranians attend a rally marking the annual Quds Day, or Jerusalem Day, on the last Friday of the holy month of Ramadan in Tehran, Iran April 29, 2022 (credit: WANA NEWS AGENCY/REUTERS)

The tasks were given to the civilians in a manner that made them appear harmless, the Shin Bet said. Some of the Israelis who received such suspicious inquiries avoided answering them, and alerted security officials about them, the security agency added.

Israelis targeted by terror honeypot schemes

Earlier this week, it was reported by the London-based anti-regime Iran International that the Islamic Republic a group of Hebrew-speaking women in the northern city of Mashad to send sexually explicit images to Israeli soldiers in attempts to access information.


According to the report, the young women were trained by the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC), were fluent in Hebrew, and contacted the soldiers over social media, sending them explicit videos and photos to gain information.

Some 22 different profiles were reportedly created. The names and profiles were fake, but the photos and videos used were real.

Hamas has been using the same tactics for years in attempts to endanger soldiers’ lives or gain access to military information. In 2022, the IDF uncovered and foiled a Hamas network posing as young women on social networks in order to honeypot IDF soldiers.

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