According to a report by Recorded Future, North Korean hackers have stolen $3 billion in crypto over the past six years. Thanks to crypto blenders, these North Korean state-backed hackers manage to launder the stolen funds unmolested.
3 billion dollars stolen in 6 years
A new report reveals the scale of the theft of crypto funds by North Korean hackers. According to the American cybersecurity company Recorded FutureNorth Korean hackers have stolen around $3 billion worth of cryptocurrency since 2017.
More than half of these were stolen last year. In fact, North Korean hackers managed to steal $1.7 billion in 2022. This amount represents 5% of North Korea’s economy or 45% of its military budget. In a country where the value of exports is just $182 million, it’s clear just how crucial the economic weight of the crypto hack is.
North Korean hackers receive crucial support from the state. This support enables them to have a more crucial impact than traditional hackers. In return, the North Korean authorities use cryptocurrency theft as a source of revenue. According to a UN report, Pyongyang’s military and weapons programs are funded in part by stolen crypto funds.
Using crypto mixers to launder stolen funds
While funds derived from crime are easily frozen, North Korean hackers still manage to evade crypto players and state authorities. According to Recorded Future’s report, North Korean hackers are using crypto mixers to launder stolen funds without risk.
It is these cryptocurrency mixers in particular that are the target of US sanctions. After banning Tornado cash from operation in August 2022, the US Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control recently announced sanctions against cryptocurrency blender Sinbad. In particular, both platforms are accused of facilitating money laundering for the North Korean Lazarus group.
No one in the crypto ecosystem is immune to hacker attacks. In addition to crypto companies and protocols, individual users are sometimes targeted and lose their funds. So you’ll need to protect your funds by getting the right wallet and following our tips for securing it.
I dream of a world where every citizen has total control over themselves, including their finances. I believe that Bitcoin is one of the tools that will achieve this revolution. Since 2019, I am learning about this cryptocurrency and spreading the word around.