North Korea link emerges in global cyberattacks

After days of disruptions affecting networks worldwide, a top US official said the number of computers affected had reached 300,000, but that infection rates had slowed.

North Korea link emerges in global cyberattacks

World Bulletin / News Desk

Security researchers on Monday reported signs of a potential North Korea link to the massive cyberattack campaign that sparked havoc in computer systems worldwide and opened fresh political rifts between Russia and the United States.

In the first clues of the origin of the massive ransomware attacks, Google researcher Neel Mehta posted computer code that showed similarities between the "WannaCry" malware and a vast hacking effort widely attributed to Pyongyang.

The code used in the latest attack shared many similarities with past hacks blamed on the North, including the targeting of Sony Pictures, said Simon Choi, director of Seoul internet security firm Hauri.

"I saw signs last year that the North was preparing ransomware attacks or even already beginning to do so, targeting some South Korean companies," he told AFP.

Isolated, nuclear-armed North Korea is known to operate an army of thousands of hackers operating in both the North, and apparently China, and has been blamed for a number of major cyberattacks.

In November 2014, Sony Pictures Entertainment became the target of the biggest cyberattack in US corporate history, linked to its release of North Korea satire "The Interview".

More attacks were possible, Choi said, "especially given that, unlike missile or nuclear tests, they can deny their involvement in attacks in cyberspace and get away with it".

Israeli-based security firm Intezer Labs said it agreed with the North Korea attribution.

The group's chief executive Itai Tevet said in a tweet: "@IntezerLabs confirms attribution to North Korea for #WannaCry, not only because of the function from Lazarus. More info to come."

Last Mod: 16 Mayıs 2017, 11:20
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