• According to an undisclosed White House official, North Korea has funded approximately half of its missile tests through crypto theft and cyberattacks.
• A recent Chainalysis report suggested that North Korean hackers embezzled $1.7 billion of digital assets in 2022.
• Anne Neuberger – Deputy National Security Adviser for cyber and emerging technology – said Biden’s cabinet is “putting a lot of time and thought” and is trying to understand how “a country like [North Korea] is so darn creative in this space.“

North Korean Missile Programs Funded via Stolen Cryptocurrencies

According to an undisclosed White House official, North Korea has funded approximately half of its missile tests through crypto theft and cyberattacks. A recent Chainalysis report suggested that North Korean hackers embezzled $1.7 billion of digital assets in 2022. Arguably the most notorious local hacking collective – the Lazarus Group – stood behind numerous exploits last year, with the $625 million breach on Ronin Network being the most famous one.

Anne Neuberger’s Statement

Anne Neuberger – Deputy National Security Adviser for cyber and emerging technology – said Biden’s cabinet is “putting a lot of time and thought” into understanding how “a country like [North Korea] is so darn creative in this space.“ She also asserted that US intelligence agencies are trying to identify the bad actors and trace the drained funds back to their source.

The US‘ Commitment Towards Stopping Crypto Theft

Neuberger further revealed that the US government is committed to identifying North Korean crypto hackers and tracing the stolen digital assets they have taken over the years. The White House official also called on other nations to join forces against such attacks, noting that global cooperation could help limit illicit activities related to cryptocurrencies significantly.

The Lazarus Group’s Role

The Lazarus Group is widely recognized as North Korea’s state-sponsored hacking team responsible for a number of large-scale security breaches over the past few years, targeting entities from all around the world including banks, cryptocurrency exchanges, governments, etc., using sophisticated tools like ransomware or phishing attacks.

Conclusion

To conclude, it appears that cryptocurrencies have been used by North Korea as a means of financing its military programs including missile tests over recent years; however, there are efforts at work from both national governments as well as private entities attempting to stop these malicious activities involving cryptocurrencies before they happen or reduce any potential damages caused by them if they do take place successfully.

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