UN Says North Korea Funded Nuclear Weapons With Crypto Hacks in 2020: Report
U.N. experts estimate that over $316 million in crypto was stolen by North Korea-linked hackers last year.
Cryptocurrency hacks worth hundreds of millions of dollars were used to help fund North Korea's nuclear weapons and ballistic missile programs in 2020, according to United Nations experts.
- A report sent to U.N. Security Council members on Monday said North Korea-linked criminals continued to attack financial institutions and cryptocurrency exchanges over last year.
- The experts estimated that, from 2019 to November 2020, around $316.4 million in crypto assets had been stolen by these actors, according to an AP report Tuesday.
- They cited a single September 2020 hack against a cryptocurrency exchange that stole $281 million worth of cryptocurrency.
- That may be a reference to the breach at the KuCoin exchange breach, reported by CoinDesk in the same month.
- The U.N. experts investigated activities conducted by North Korea’s intelligence agency, the Reconnaissance General Bureau, which is on the U.N. sanctions blacklist for targeting cryptocurrency and defense companies.
- North Korea is said to be laundering stolen cryptocurrencies through over-the-counter brokers in China in order to acquire fiat currencies such as the U.S. dollar.
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