Governance, Risk and Compliance, Threat Intelligence, Breach

UN report exposes North Korean cyberattacks, crypto laundering spree

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The United Nations uncovered a massive cryptocurrency laundering scheme conducted by North Korea in March that utilized the virtual currency platform Tornado Cash to clean $147.5 million stolen from a crypto exchange, Reuters reports.

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A report submitted to the U.N. Security Council sanctions committee on Friday revealed that monitors had been looking into 97 alleged North Korean cyberattacks targeting cryptocurrency companies between 2017 and 2024, with a total estimated value of $3.6 billion. This includes an attack that occurred late last year in which the cryptocurrency exchange HTX saw $147.5 million taken before it was laundered in March of this year.

They based their testimony on data from blockchain research company Elliptic and crypto analytics company PeckShield. The monitors reported that in 2024 alone, they examined "11 cryptocurrency thefts … valued at $54.7 million," and that many of those "may have been conducted by DPRK IT workers inadvertently hired by small crypto-related companies."

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