North Korea has stolen $400 million worth of crypto in 2021 » Crypto Insiders

According to a report from the blockchain analysis company Chainanlysis, North Korean hackers have been able to get a considerable amount of crypto in 2021. The number of major attacks by hackers from the dictatorship increased from four to seven and the stolen value was 40% higher than in 2020. In total, no less than $400 million was stolen.


The report clearly shows what the exact goals of the North Korean hackers were. The victims were mainly investment companies and crypto exchanges. Among other things, use was made of phishing, exploiting vulnerable software and even advanced social engineering techniques.

According to Chainalysis, about 20% of stolen crypto assets consist of bitcoin (BTC). 22% consisted of various altcoins, but it is remarkable that at least 58% of the stolen cryptocurrencies consisted of ethereum (ETH).

Once North Korea obtained ownership of the stolen assets, a meticulous process to launder the money was initiated. So this seems to be a sophisticated operation. In total, Chainalysis has around $170 million in its sights stolen in 49 unique cyberattacks between 2017 and 2021 and has not yet been laundered.

Lazarus Group

Everything indicates that the hackers operate under the name ‘Lazarus Group’. According to US intelligence services, this group falls under the General Bureau Recognition from North Korea. This is the country’s most important intelligence service and is comparable to, for example, the American CIA in their range of tasks.

This group first became notorious after major cyber attacks on Sony, among others. Since then, however, the focus of the group has clearly been within the crypto industry. In recent years, an average of about $200 million has been stolen per year, but it turns out that 2021 was an exceptionally good year for the hackers.

According to the UN Security Council part of the proceeds from these hacks will be invested in the development of weapons of mass destruction and missile programs.

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