(Reuters) Idrees Ali and Phil Stewart October 16 2019 11:00 WASHINGTON - The United States carried out a secret cyber operation against Iran in the wake of the Sept. 14 attacks on Saudi Arabias oil facilities which Washington and Riyadh blame on Tehran two U.S. officials have told Reuters. The officials who spoke on condition of anonymity said the operation took place in late September and took aim at Tehrans ability to spread propaganda. One of the officials said the strike affected physical hardware but did not provide further details. It highlights how President Donald Trumps administration has been trying to counter what it sees as Iranian aggression without spiraling into a broader conflict. The strike appears more limited than other such operations against Iran this year after the downing of an American drone in June and an alleged attack by Irans Revolutionary Guards on oil tankers in the Gulf in May. The United States Saudi Arabia Britain France and Germany have publicly blamed the Sept. 14 attack on Iran which denied involvement in the strike. The Iran-aligned Houthi militant group in Yemen claimed responsibility. Publicly the Pentagon has responded by sending thousands of additional troops and equipment to bolster Saudi defenses - the latest U.S. deployment to the region this year. The Pentagon declined to comment about the cyber strike.