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North Korea denies Crypto hacks worth $2 billion

Samson Ononeme | Sep. 2, 2019
North Korea denies Crypto hacks worth $2 billion

North Korea denies crypto hacks allegations, stating that the United States and other hostile forces are spreading ill-hearted rumors to tarnish the image of the country.

September 2, 2019 | AtoZ Markets - North Korea, which is formally known as the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) has refuted the accusation of obtaining $2 billion via a long-running hacking campaign, including the attack on cryptocurrency exchanges and banks, The Korea Times reports.

North Korea accuses the United States of spreading rumors

Yesterday September 1, the country’s official state-run news agency, the Korea Central News Agency (KCNA)  denied allegations of massive theft by North Korean agents. 

The United Nations Security Council North Korea sanctions committee said that the “Democratic People’s Republic of Korea cyber actors, many operating under the direction of the Reconnaissance General Bureau, were raising money for its WMD (weapons of mass destruction) programs, with total proceeds to date estimated at up to two billion US dollars.”

Responding to this claims, the KCNA cited a statement from the National Coordination Committee of the DPRK for Anti-Money Laundering and Countering the Financing of Terrorism, that the United States and other hostile forces are spreading rumors and fake propaganda.

“Such a fabrication by the hostile forces is nothing but a sort of a nasty game aimed at tarnishing the image of our Republic and finding justification for sanctions and pressure campaign against the DPRK,” reads the statement.

The statement also added that the UN is “re-enacting the same old trick as the Hitler fascist propagandists used to cling to." However, evidence gathered elsewhere contradicts North Korea’s denial.

South Korea Hardest Hit By North Korean Crypto hacks

As AtoMarkets reported, a leaked UN report shows that North Korea stole cryptocurrencies from South Korean exchanges using victims’ computing power to mine bitcoin. The report also added that hackers attacked the South Korean exchange Bithumb for at least four times and made away with about $14 million in two attacks in 2017, $31 million in 2018, and $20 million in March 2019. 

What is more, cybercrime watchdog Group-IB also reported in October 2018 that North Korean-based hacker group Lazarus is responsible for $571 of the $882 million--or 65%-- of the total crypto stolen from crypto exchanges between the second quarter of 2017 and early 2018. 

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