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Facebook has tipped off the State Department to an usual effort by Iran to hack government employees over the past month, according to a report.

"It was very carefully designed and showed the degree to which they understood which of our staff was working on Iran issues now that the nuclear deal is done," the New York Times quoted one senior U.S. official as saying. "It was subtle."

On Oct. 16, Facebook implemented a new feature to inform users when they are being targeted by a foreign government. "We believe your Facebook account and your other online accounts may be the target of attacks by state-sponsored actors," a message will inform targeted users when they log in.

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