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HomeSecurityNorth Korean crypto hacks down 80% but that could change overnight: Chainalysis

North Korean crypto hacks down 80% but that could change overnight: Chainalysis

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TL;DR:

  • North Korean crypto thefts decreased by 80% in 2023, totaling $340.4 million, down from $1.7 billion in 2022.
  • The decrease isn’t a true sign of improved security; rather, it reflects a high benchmark set in 2022.
  • Recent hacks by Lazarus Group accounted for $95 million, emphasizing ongoing threats.
  • North Korea’s reliance on Russian exchanges for money laundering is rising.
  • They exploit US-sanctioned mixers for illicit fund processing.
  • The stolen funds likely support North Korea’s nuclear program.
  • Chainalysis suggests training employees to counter social engineering tactics and enhancing smart contract audits.

Facts:

  • North Korean hackers stole $340.4 million in cryptocurrency in 2023, an 80% reduction from the $1.7 billion stolen in 2022.
  • However, the decrease is not necessarily a sign of improved security, but a reflection of the exceptionally high benchmark set in 2022.
  • Lazarus Group, linked to North Korea, conducted two recent hacks totaling over $95 million.
  • North Korean hackers rely on Russian exchanges for laundering illicit funds and utilize US-sanctioned mixers like Tornado Cash and Blender.
  • The stolen funds are likely supporting North Korea’s nuclear missile program.
  • Chainalysis recommends employee training to counter social engineering tactics and emphasizes the need for smart contract audits.

Source: Cointelegraph

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