South Korea’s police chief confirmed that
North Korea was behind last month’s cyberattack that flooded South Korea’s public organizations
with malicious spam emails. This is the latest in a long list of suspected
cyberattacks by the North,.. although the regime has always denied any involvement.
Kwon Jang-Ho files this report. A police investigation has concluded that
January’s spam email attack on South Korea’s public organizations was committed by a North
Korean hacking team. The commissioner-general of the National Police
Agency said on Monday that the hackers sent these emails pretending to be from the presidential
office or the foreign ministry. The subject of the email was North Korea’s
recent nuclear test. The wording and grammar of the writing also
suggested North Korean origin. Police said the IP address of the emails were
traced back to Liaoning, an area in northeast China that borders North Korea — close enough
that the North can connect to it wirelessly. It was also the same address linked to a previous
cyber attack in 2014 on a South Korean nuclear power plant.
Over 750 email accounts have been hit since last June, and most of the account holders
have been found to have occupations related to North Korean issues.
The commissioner-general said it showed a “deliberate targeting process that cannot
be deemed as a coincidence.” He gave assurances that there had been no
damage to national security from this latest attack, but vigilance remains high.
On Sunday the South Korean government raised its cyber attack alert system called INFOCOM,
to level three out of five, saying further cyberattacks were a possibility.
Kwon Jang-Ho, Arirang News.