World North Korea denies role in global cyberattack

21:30  19 may  2017
21:30  19 may  2017 Source:   AFP

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Amid mounting tension and hatred between the two rival countries, North Korea Saturday denied its role in the cyber attack that brought down nearly 50,000 South Korean computers and broadcaster servers last month.

North Korea denies any involvement in the Sony hack, called Obama “a monkey” and accused the U.S. of shutting down its Internet. Security researchers suggest more proof is necessary to make a conclusive determination on who was behind the cyberattack .

North Korea's deputy UN ambassador Kim In Ryong denies his government is behind cyberattacks while wearing a pin with images of North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un and his late father Kim Kim Jong-il, at the UN headquarters in New York on May 19, 2017.© Provided by AFP North Korea's deputy UN ambassador Kim In Ryong denies his government is behind cyberattacks while wearing a pin with images of North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un and his late father Kim Kim Jong-il, at the UN headquarters in New York on May 19, 2017.

North Korea on Friday angrily dismissed reports linking its isolated regime to the global cyberattack that held thousands of computers to virtual ransom.

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Up to 300,000 computers in 150 countries were hit by the WannaCry worm, which seizes systems and demands payment in Bitcoin to return control to users.

The code used in the latest attack is similar to that used in past hacks blamed on Kim Jong-Un's regime, leading some to point the finger at Pyongyang.

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In November 2014, Sony Pictures Entertainment became the target of the biggest cyberattack in US corporate history, linked to its release of North Korea satire “The Interview.” More attacks were possible, Choi said, “especially given that, unlike missile or nuclear tests, they can deny their

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But the North has now denied the claims, notably but not exclusively advanced by South Korean experts, and hit back Friday to accuse its opponents of spreading propaganda.

"It is ridiculous," Kim In-Ryong, North Korea's deputy ambassador to the United Nations, told reporters, suggesting Washington and Seoul were behind the allegation.

"Whenever something strange happens, it is the stereotyped way of the United States and the hostile forces to kick off a noisy anti-DPRK campaign."

Seoul internet security firm Hauri, known for its vast troves of data on Pyongyang's hacking activities, has been warning of ransomware attacks since last year.

The firm's Simon Choi told AFP that the WannaCry malware shares code with tools used to target Sony Pictures and Bangladesh, in previous attacks blamed on the North.

Researchers in the US, Russia and Israel have also pointed to a potential North Korean link -- but it is notoriously hard to attribute cyberattacks.

Google researcher Neel Mehta has shown similarities between WannaCry and code used by the Lazarus hacking group, widely believed to be connected to Pyongyang.

Seoul says NKorean object that drew fire was likely balloon .
<p>South Korea's military said an unidentified object that flew across the border from rival North Korea and prompted the South to respond with warning shots on Tuesday was probably a balloon carrying Pyongyang's propaganda leaflets.</p>Load Error

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