Sep 06, 2018

North Korean Hacker charged with Sony, Bangladesh Bank Roberry and WannaCry Cyber Attacks

The United States has charged a North Korean Computer Programmer known as Park Jin-hyok for being involved in many global cyber attacks in the past few years including 2014 Sony Pictures attack, the 2016 cyber-heist of Bangladesh's central bank, and the 2017 WannaCry 2.0. Park Jin-hyok has been known to be engaged in these attacks on behalf of the Government of North Korea.

According to the 176-page indictment by the US government, the hacker worked for Chosun Expo Joint Venture, a company tied to a North Korean military intelligence unit and was part of the "Lazarus Group". The Lazarus Group is also tied to other cyber attacks on Southeast Asia and Africa, as per US allegations. Park has been charged with the conspiracy to commit computer fraud which carries a maximum of 5 years in jail and conspiracy to commit wire fraud which carries a maximum of 20 years in prison. Since US does not have any diplomatic relations with North Korea, Park will not be extradited.

  • In November 2014, before the release of the movie "The Interview" based on North Korean Leader, Kim Jong-Un was released Sony Pictures was hacked. Thousands of emails, confidential document and unreleased movies were compromised.
  • In 2016, an illegal transfer of money worth $81 million had taken place from a Bangladeshi bank after a cyber attack.
  • In 2017, the WannaCry cyber attack had affected about 300,000 computers which asked people to pay certain amount of Bitcoins to gain access to their files again.

The accusations against Park, the North Korean hacker, have come at a time when US is trying to move forward its negotiations with Pyongyang over halting its nuclear weapons programme.

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