North Korea 'directly responsible' for cyberattack in May, White House official says

19 December, 2017, 11:37 | Author: Edward Snyder
  • Australia arrests man accused of trying to sell missile parts for N.Korea

News reports quoted a senior Trump administration official as saying that the USA had come to the conclusion, "with a very high level of confidence" that the Lazarus Group, a hacking organisation that works on behalf of Pyongyang, was behind the WannaCry attack. However, he also launched into various allegations against other countries.

Other governments and private companies including the United Kingdom and Microsoft agree with the US's conclusion, he said.

This was enough, at the time, to insinuate North Korea was behind Wannacry, though researchers warned it was "well short of poof, " and that copying snippets of code is not uncommon among unrelated hacker groups.

The White House has publicly blamed North Korea for a ransomware attack in May that locked more than 300,000 computers in 150 countries.

"Bossert goes on to say: "[WannaCry] encrypted and rendered useless hundreds of thousands of computers. while victims received ransom demands, paying did not unlock their computers.




"What we see is a continued pattern of North Korea misbehaving, whether destructive cyber attacks, hacking for financial gain, or targeting infrastructure around the globe", the official said. "North Korea has acted especially badly, largely unchecked, for more than a decade, and its malicious behavior is growing more egregious".

"We also indicted Russian hackers and a Canadian acting in concert with them".

Bossert called on governments and businesses to come together to reduce the risks of cyber attacks and for harsher punishments. Whenever possible, we will work with partners, industry and allied governments, who share our market based values. The U.S. must lead this effort, rallying allies and responsible tech companies throughout the free world to increase the security and resilience of the internet.

North Korea claimed after launching its latest missile, its most advanced ICBM so far, that it has completed its state nuclear force.

He said the Trump administration would continue to use its "maximum pressure strategy to curb Pyongyang's ability to mount attacks, cyber or otherwise". It was reported back in June that the US National Security Agency was in possession of evidence that pointed to North Korea. The four-day joint military drills ended on December 15.

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