Reports show that Japan has suffered around 30% of the total losses from the North Korean crypto hackers. According to an Elliptic report trusted by the Nikkei, various countries in Asia have been on the hit list for North Korean hackers.
Most of these hackers and ransomware hackers were able to access these digital assets due to sloppy cyber security measures.
Japan Among the Top Countries Globally
Japan has been the biggest loser of digital assets, most notably the cryptocurrencies, from the North Korean hackers. The report by Elliptic, a blockchain analytics firm, shows that the country lost millions of worth of blockchain due to poor security measures.
Elliptic also found out that the Hermit Kingdom’s hackers group considers Asian countries as the top three targets for cryptocurrencies. Reports by White House officials also show the U.S. losing millions of dollars’ worth of digital assets to North Korean hackers.
Japanese financial publication Nikkei reported and commissioned the report that focuses on losses of cryptocurrency due to cyber-attacks made by North Korea in the last 5 years.
The study closely examined all instances of hacking and ransomware attacks and described them as a national strategy.
Japan’s Losses Reach a Whopping $721 Million
The Japanese people had to endure losses of a whopping $721 million due to the loss of cyber currencies. Elliptic further found out that this loss makes up around 30% of the total losses of $2.3 billion.
The United Nations (UN) has said that the crypto thefts by North Korea reached to a new high in 2022. Nikkei said that the stats by the Japan External Trade Organization show the crypto assets worth $721 million stolen from Japan are almost 9 times higher than the total export value of North Korea in 2021.
Among other Asian countries, Vietnam also incurred losses of around $540 million within that time frame, making it the second-most attacked country.
Hong Kong was also one of the most affected regions in Asia, incurring a loss of $281 million. It was in the fourth position, behind the US which suffered from losses of $497 million from crypto theft.
North Korea Funding Its Nuclear Program through Stole Crypto Coins
According to a source from the White House, North Korea funded its nuclear missile test through crypto thefts and cyber-attacks. It is estimated that the North Korean hackers stole digital assets of around $1.7 billion in 2022.
Out of all the cyber criminals and hackers, the Lazarus Group was responsible for carrying out the most notorious attacks. The Ronin network by this group led to losses of around $625 million.
North Korea is continuously working on improving its overall defense systems and military capabilities. However, the country is heavily sanctioned by the US and other Western nations in a bid to cripple its economy.
The country’s leader, Kim Jong Un, wants to expand their military operations and include a fleet of new missiles. Many experts and analysts who are following the matter closely believe that the nation is using the stolen crypto funds to finance the missile program.
The US and other countries have been the target of cybercriminals and other hacking groups. These groups stole around $640 million worth of digital assets including cryptocurrencies in 2022. And these attacks have become more and more aggressive.
Most countries are now devising plans and strategies to combat the growing threat of North Korea’s advances. They would need to have a strong cybersecurity strategy that would help them stop hackers and other groups from stealing digital assets worth billions of dollars.