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Wednesday, June 6, 2012

The Latest Chapter of the North Korean Cyber Campaign against South Korea

The South Korean government (ROKG) believes it has sniffed out a genuine North Korean cyber campaign efforts against South Korea.  The Arirang News has reported on June 4th that the South Korean police has arrested a man identified as Cho on Sunday, June 3rd, for distributing mal-ware embedded computer games in South Korea.  The mal-ware is believed to be developed by the North Korean Reconnaissance Bureau, which oversees the North Korean cyber units such as Unit 121 (discussions of other cyber related units can be found here).  The Arirang News reports that Cho is suspected of purchasing the programs in Shenyang, China, which has been known for housing the North Korean hacker activities outside of North Korea.  It would be interesting to see what comes about with the most recent arrest although the ROKG is usually very sensitive when it comes to this type of events, and I suspect that it will be no different this time around, and probably will not put out too much information for the purview of the public.

On a side note, I discovered that there are quite a few cyber-related sites on the Internet that actually cites me as their primary source of information about the North Korean cyber capabilities (some of the hyper-links in this posting will take you to some of these sites).  While it was very nice to see that people are actually citing my work, I would like to take this opportunity to make one thing clear to everyone... it is not too important, but I thought I'd set the record straight for good.  Almost all of the sites say that they got the information from an "internal report" or an "internal document"; however, the work they are citing is NOT an "internal report" or an "internal document".  What they have the link to is the English translation version of the journal article that was published in the June 2009 issue of Defense and Technology, which is in Korean.

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