North Korea supports missile development via hacks on cryptocurrency exchanges

North Korea has financed its nuclear and ballistic missile programmes with earnings from cyberattacks on cryptocurrency exchanges, according to Reuters, citing a classified United Nations (U.N.) assessment.

“According to a member state, DPRK cyber actors stole more than US$50 million from at least three cryptocurrency exchanges in North America, Europe, and Asia between 2020 and mid-2021,” Reuters reported citing the United Nations study.

Independent sanctions monitors presented the report to the United Nations Security Council’s North Korea sanctions committee on Friday evening.

Chainalysis, a blockchain forensics company, has reported that North Korean state-sponsored hackers stole about US$400 million in cryptocurrencies from at least seven assaults last year.

According to the United Nations assessment, North Korea generated US$2 billion in 2019 via cyberattacks to build weapons of mass devastation. North Korea launched nine ballistic missiles in January, the most in a single month by the hermit state.

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