North Korea has hacked USD 1.7B of crypto and views the loot as a ‘long-term investment’. Experts say that Pyongyang is going long on its take of tokens, rather than quickly trading them for cash.
According to Newsis and Chosun, the US federal government prosecutor issued statements saying that North Korean hackers have been “conspiring with other money-laundering criminals” to “steal crypto-assets” from at least “three digital asset exchanges” before “laundering the proceeds.”
According to data from Asan Institute for Policy Studies (AIPS), a US blockchain firm that analyses the crypto market and is headquartered in South Korea, there have been different cases of cryptocurrency exchange attacks. The attacks connected to North Korea include the Slovenian platform attack in 2017, the Indonesian raid in 2018, and the latest York hack in 2020.
Both the South Korean authorities and US experts blame Pyongyang for the 2017 attack on Bithumb and a $281 million attack on KuCoin. Seoul also claims the North was behind the attack of South Korea-based YouBit crypto exchange, which closed after the second attack.
In 2018, experts in Seoul and Washington insisted Pyongyang trained 20 cyber warriors and commanded them to storm western and western-associated cryptos with impunity.