Is the lifeline of North Korea against stronger sanctions a virtual currency Bitcoin?
North Korea, which continues to develop nuclear weapons and missiles, the UN Security Council adopted a new resolution on North Korea sanctions on September 11, 2017, imposing severe sanctions such as restricting supply of crude oil and prohibiting imports of North Korean textile products It was done. As it becomes difficult to acquire foreign currency through repeated sanctions, North Korea is committed to acquiring foreign currency using "virtual currency".
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According to FireEye, a security research firm, the cybercrime organization of North Korea has been criminalizing criminal activities targeting banks and international financial organizations since 2016. As economic sanctions are imposed and the acquisition of foreign currency becomes difficult, North Korea has begun to acquire cash due to cybercrime in the nation.
However, as the market price of virtual currencies such as Bitcoin (bit coin) since the beginning of 2017 rose, the cyber crime group of North Korea gradually began taking action aimed at the virtual currency. North Korea is aiming at the exchanges of virtual currency in Korea, and the method is based on mail called spear phishing attack. In the spear phishing attack that took place in South Korea in May 2017, paying attention to the fact that it is close to the deadline of income report, we send an e-mail with "tax documents" attached and infect malware PEACHPIT, We steal currencies or send malware to personal email addresses of virtual currency exchanges officials and attack the exchanges themselves to steal virtual currencies.
In addition, North Korea said that after exchanging it with Alto coins like Monero, we will exchange dollars and won for bit coins and earmaliums acquired through cyber criminal acts. This procedure is a malware that plagues all over the worldWanna CryIt is being used to empty the related bit coin wallet and North Korea's involvement in Wanna Cry incident is also suspected.
Cybercrime from North Korea,Attack on Sony Pictures in 2014, Attacks on nuclear power plants in South Korea in 2015, Attacks on Samsung's messenger application in 2016, and so on, there is nothing to do with enumeration, Mr. Luke McNamara of FireEye said, "A spy of the cyber crime group of North Korea Activity is ingenious, it is quite excellent compared to activities by other North Korean organizations. "
There is a fact that virtual currency that anonymity is guaranteed and can be exchanged in the net space can be suited not only for the movement of funds but also for crime such as money laundering. The more sanctions against North Korea are strengthened, the more likely the North Korean cyber crime group will activate the violation of the virtual currency.