“It’s not about anyone in their basement trying to mine cryptocurrencies,” Soo Kim, a former North Korea analyst at the CIA, told CNN. Rather, it is a way of life, she says.
The country is taking the self-sufficiency course with the help of proceeds from crypto hacks due to the challenges that the regime under Kim Jong-Un is struggling with, such as food shortages and isolation from other countries. In addition, the activity as an “IT expert: in” is much better paid than other jobs in the East Asian state.
According to an investigation by Coincub, North Korea leads the list of countries in terms of crypto crime, followed by the United States and Russia. According to this, about 7,000 hackers had captured almost 1.6 billion US dollars for North Korea. For example, the North Korean hacker group Lazarus is also said to have been behind the worst DeFi hack of all time on the Ronin Bridge. The damage: $ 625 million.
However, an end is not yet in sight. The methods of the North Korean hackers are not yet perfect, explains Kim, but it is also a new market for the country. Attacks could therefore still be optimized in the future.