North Korea has been accused of hacking South Korean cryptocurrency exchanges in a series of cyber-heists. A mysterious hacking squad called the Lazarus Group is thought to have launched operations aimed at cryptocurrency businesses based in democratic South Korea.
Although it’s often hard to prove the true identity of cyber-attackers, it’s believed the Lazarus Group is a ‘threat actor’ based in North Korea. It has been linked to the ‘WannaCry’ attacks which crippled the NHS using malware which locked down computers and demanded a ransom in Bitcoin to open them up again.
Juan Andres Guerrero-Saade and Priscilla Moriuchi, security researchers at the tech firm Insikt Group, have just published research which suggests Pyongyang launched a new hacking campaign in the autumn of last year.
They wrote: ‘The targets of this campaign appear to be users of the Coinlink cryptocurrency exchange, South Korean cryptocurrency exchanges at large… and a group called ‘Friends of MOFA’ (Ministry of Foreign Affairs), which is a group of college students from around South Korea with ‘a keen interest in foreign affairs’.
Its believed the hackers stole emails and passwords of users of Coinlink, a South Korean cryptocurrency exchange, as well as the resumes of South Korean computer scientists who have worked at similar exchanges. The researchers added: ‘This late 2017 campaign is a continuation of North Korea’s interest in cryptocurrency, which we now know encompasses a broad range of activities including mining, ransomware, and outright theft.’
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