US Department of Justice demands to confiscate crypto assets from 280 accounts of North Korean hackers

The US Department of Justice has filed a lawsuit and is demanding the confiscation of cryptoassets from 280 accounts allegedly linked to hackers funded by the North Korean government.

The US Department of Justice said it found a link between the accounts and two cryptocurrency exchange hacks allegedly carried out last year by hackers sponsored by the North Korean government.
According to the statement, during the first hack last year, crypto assets Proton, PlayGame and IHT Real Estate Protocol worth $272,000 were stolen from an unnamed exchange. Two months later, during the second hack, crypto assets equivalent to $2,5 million were stolen from the American exchange.

According to the prosecutor’s office, the North Korean hackers cashed these funds through Chinese cryptocurrency OTC traders who had previously been involved in laundering illegal proceeds in cryptoassets.

According to a report previously released by the US Army, the number of hackers in North Korea exceeds 6,000, with 1,700 of them working exclusively on stealing cryptocurrencies. In the spring, US government agencies published a list of cyberattacks attributed to North Korea and proposed countermeasures.

In addition, another report was published in the spring, in which experts from various organizations suggested that North Korea is funding supply chains and trading networks with the help of illegal cryptocurrencies for $1,5 billion.

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