North Korea has been known for their rampant and often very successful cyber attacks over the last several years. In fact, experts say that cyber crime is the rogue nation’s main method for obtaining foreign currency.
One would also assume that North Korean would have shied away from state-sponsored cybercrime against the United States during the summit in Hanoi, Vietnam this last week with President Trump. That, however, appears to be a poor assumption.
A new report by the New York Times indicates that hackers linked to North Korea waged cyberattacks on the United States and others on the same day that Trump and Kim met to discuss denuclearization.
While North Korea has shied away from nuclear tests in the 15 months since Trump and Kim began negotiating, hackers within the Lazarus group continued to target multiple major industries in the US, including the telecommunications and energy industries.
The specific operation, according to McAfee, who discovered the covert actions, is called Operation Sharpshooter. The operation began as early as September 2017 and has continued since.
“[The hackers] are very, very, very active. It’s been nonstop,” Raj Samani, chief scientist at McAfee, told the Times.
The fact that North Korea would continue such a brazen attack in the midst of what the United States viewed as a very serious and important meeting, appears to show just how not serious Kim Jong Un and the North have been about reaching a possible agreement.