NYT: Iran Helping North Korea Conduct Cyber Attacks

By NTK Staff | 10.16.2017 @1:46pm
NYT: Iran Helping North Korea Conduct Cyber Attacks

The 'Axis of Evil' has stolen hundreds of millions of dollars and could cripple western infrastructure through hacking.

As the United States worries about the threat of North Korea’s nuclear and ballistic missile programs, the reclusive communist nation has been developing a virulently dangerous cyberhacking capability in the background, according to a report from The New York Times.

The North Korean regime has stolen hundreds of millions of dollars across global cyber networks and unleashed a virus this year that crippled the United Kingdom’s National Health Service.

Cybersecurity experts told the Times that they’re not doing it alone.

A North Korean attack on South Korean banks looked very similar to an Iranian attack on Saudi Armaco, the state-owned Saudi Arabian oil company seven months earlier:

That August, Iranian hackers flipped a kill switch at precisely 11:08 a.m., unleashing a simple wiper virus onto 30,000 Aramco computers and 10,000 servers that would destroy data, and replace it with a partial image of a burning American flag. The damage was tremendous.

Seven months later, during joint military exercises between American and South Korean forces, North Korean hackers, operating from computers inside China, deployed a very similar cyberweapon against computer networks at three major South Korean banks and South Korea’s two largest broadcasters. Like Iran’s Aramco attacks, the North Korean attacks on South Korean targets used wiping malware to eradicate data and paralyze their business operations.

Robert Hannigan, a former director of the U.K.’s Government Communications Headquarters, told the Times, “We have to assume [the North Koreans] are getting help from the Iranians.”

If the Iranians and the North Koreans were working together, it would be a dangerous alliance of anti-American forces that the Trump administration could not ignore.

And despite the severe sanctions placed on the regime for their nuclear missile development, the international community has been relatively silent in responding to cyber attacks. However, President Trump has been particularly hard on these two American adversaries, and he could change the direction of the U.S. response to the rapidly expanding danger of North Korean cyber attacks.

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