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The White House revealed on Tuesday that almost half of North Korea’s missile program is funded by stolen crypto and cyberattacks.
CNN reports a White House official revealed earlier this week that about half of North Korea’s missile project is funded through stolen cryptocurrencies and cyberattacks.
Anne Neuberger, deputy national security adviser for cyber and merging technology, explained the information was procured during a sweeping US federal government effort to understand “how a country like [North Korea] is so darn creative in this space.”
Neuberger spoke at an event hosted by the non-profit Special Competitive Studies Project.
Neuberger further said the Biden administration is “putting a lot of time and thought” into working with US intelligence agencies to identify North Korean operatives. Treasury is hard at work tracing stolen crypto.
North Korean Hackers Account for One-Third of Stolen Crypto
North Korean cybercriminals have been revealed to be responsible for one-third of cryptocurrency losses. The infamous Lazarus Group has been linked to numerous high-profile hacks and thefts of digital assets and was responsible for the $100 million hack of Harmony Protocol’s Horizon Bridge.
North Korea reportedly stole over $1 billion from the crypto sector through the activities of the Lazarus Group.
Reports from the United Nations and private firms indicate that hacking provides a key source of revenue for the Kim Jong Un-led dictatorship. Although rarely spoken about, US officials have long suspected that some stolen assets have funded Pyongyang’s weapons development program.
Previous reports detailed that the US was increasingly worried about North Korea’s efforts to fund its nuclear weapons program through digital assets.
In an attempt to curtail North Korea’s efforts, the US treasury imposed sanctions on virtual currency mixer Tornado Cash for its alleged role in helping hackers launder proceeds from cybercrimes. Hackers have, however, resorted to new mixing services such as “Sinbad” to launder cryptocurrencies.
Disclaimer: This article is provided for informational purposes only. It is not offered or intended to be used as legal, tax, investment, financial, or other advice.