- North Korean hackers have stolen virtual assets worth over $1.2 billion since 2017, with $626 million of that amount being stolen in 2022 alone.
- Four individuals and seven businesses have been placed on a blacklist for their alleged involvement in hacking and cyberattack.
- South Korea and the United States announced a joint cybersecurity venture to combat ransomware attacks.
Soon after S. Korea declared a cooperative cyber project with U.S. intelligence agencies to combat ransomware threats, penalties were imposed against a number of well-known individuals and hacking groups.
The most notorious of the four hackers is Park Jin-hyuk, who works in information technology for the Chosun Expo Joint Venture, a front company connected to the Lazarus Group in North Korea. He is widely known for his involvement in the WannaCry ransomware attack in 2017 and the cyberattack on Sony Pictures Entertainment in 2014. In 2018, the United States Treasury placed him on a blacklist.
According to information provided by the Foreign Ministry, North Korean hackers have stolen virtual assets worth over $1.2 billion since 2017, with $626 million of that amount being stolen in 2022 alone. According to reports, a confidential United Nations report has revealed that North Korean hackers have stolen more crypto assets in 2022 than in any other year, with the total amount of theft estimated to be between $650 million and $1 billion.
Cyber activities, often linked to North Korea’s Reconnaissance General Bureau (RGB) – the country’s military intelligence agency – are believed to be a primary source of funding for its nuclear and missile programs, despite the country being subject to stringent international sanctions.