Trump goes after the North Korean Bitcoin hackers

President Trump, exalted Tweeter-in-Chief, tweeted: “Not a fan” of Bitcoin

After the UN report came out claiming that North Korea has stolen and hacked over $2 billion of cryptocurrencies, and after the country denied all such allegations, the Trump Administration had decided to go after the alleged hackers.

The news came from the US Treasury’s  press statement released on Friday, September 13th. In particular, it is the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) that has decided to sanction the malicious cyber attacking by North Korean hackers. The syndicates that are to be prosecuted are the infamous Lazarus Group, Andariel and Bluenoroff. Two of them are considered to be part of the Lazarus Group, the most malicious, in terms of damage and size, hacker group.

This is what Sigal Mandelker, Treasury Under Secretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence stated regarding OFAC’s decision:

Treasury is taking action against North Korean hacking groups that have been perpetrating cyber attacks to support illicit weapon and missile programs. We will continue to enforce existing U.S. and UN sanctions against North Korea and work with the international community to improve cybersecurity of financial networks.

The US Treasury’s statement also detailed the beginnings of the Lazarus Group and their destructive effect on critical social and economic infrastructure. The Group was created by the government of North Korea in 2007, and has been a subordinate of the 110th Research Center, 3rd Bureau of the RGB. This Bureau has been

Created by the North Korean Government as early as 2007, this malicious cyber group is subordinate to the 110th Research Center, 3rd Bureau of the RGB.  The 3rd Bureau has been responsible for North Korea’s cyber operations since its existence.




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