North Korea Hackers Stole Over a Half-Billion in Cryptocurrency – Report

Crime, ICO News, News | October 21, 2018 By:

North Korean hackers known as Lazarus have stolen more than a half-billion dollars in cryptocurrencies, according to cybersecurity vendor Group-IB.

The firm contends Lazarus was behind 14 hacks on crypto exchanges since January 2017, reaping an estimated $571 million in the raids. The North Korean hacking efforts are a way to raise money in a country that has experienced severe sanctions from the world community on its economic activity, which is meager even before the sanctions.

Lazarus was a biblical character who rose from the dead four days after dying. Despite the recent thaw in international relations between North Korea and other countries, its economy is still strugglng to obtain hard currency and trade.

Group-IB also indicates that a total of $882 million in cryptocurrency was stolen from various exchanges from 2017 to 2018.  It contends that more breaches will happen, particularly as traditional bankers enter the space.

The report indicates that hackers use such methods as spear phishing, social engineering and malware to achieve their goals. Spear phishing targetis  individuals or organizations with malware delivered via an email attachment.

Group-IB estimates hackers have stolen 10 percent of the funds raised by ICO platforms since early 2017.