South Korean government officials are among nearly 1,500 citizens targeted by North Korean hackers since March, who posed as journalists in an attempt to steal crypto and upload mining malware, authorities claim.
As reported by Korea Joongang Daily, the South Korea National Police Agency said on Tuesday that North Korean hackers stole data from 1,468 victims between March and October in a crypto phishing campaign.
Police said the hackers were focused on stealing cryptocurrency and gained access to the crypto accounts of 19 victims. Hackers also uploaded crypto-mining malware to over 147 hacked proxy servers.
To do all this, the North Korean hackers reportedly posed as South Korean journalists and government bodies, including the national tax, pension, and health insurance service, alongside the South Korean National Police Agency.
Under this cover, the hackers apparently sent convincing phishing emails. With a single click, unsuspecting recipients uploaded malware onto their own device. Data stored on the device was then accessible to hackers. 57 government officials, either retired or still working, were among those who lost their data.
Police additionally reported that North Korea’s hacking efforts this year have grown in scope and scale. Authorities noted it had already shut down 42 related phishing websites.