North Korea behind cyber attack on S.Korea bank - prosecutors

SEOUL Tue May 3, 2011 3:56pm IST

Related Topics

SEOUL (Reuters) - North Korean computer hackers were responsible for bringing down the network of a South Korean bank last month, prosecutors in Seoul said on Tuesday, in the latest of a string of cyber attacks thought to have originated from the secretive state.

Kim Young-dae, a senior prosecutor from the Seoul Central Prosecutors' Office, said an "unprecedented act of cyber terror" by a North Korean group caused the network breakdown of South Korea's agricultural banking cooperative Nonghyup.

The crash of Nonghyup's computer system affected millions of customers who were unable to use the bank's credit cards and ATMs for more than a week.

Prosecutors said the April 12 attack was "meticulously prepared and executed" by the same group that carried out cyber attacks on key South Korean government and business websites in 2009 and March this year.

One of the internet protocol addresses used to break into the Nonghyup network was the same as one used two months ago for the distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attack that originated from North Korea, the prosecution said. It said in a statement that the attack was a new type of cyber terrorism that targeted a private firm in an effort to destroy the financial system which is "the backbone of (the South's) capitalist society".

North Korea was also blamed for disrupting GPS signals in the South in March, possibly in an attempt to disrupt joint military drills by South Korean and U.S. forces.

A South Korean defence white paper released earlier this year said cyber threats were becoming increasingly intelligent and virulent.

The two Koreas are still technically at war, having only signed a truce to end the 1950-53 Korean War, and tensions spiked sharply last year following two deadly attacks on the peninsula in which 50 South Koreans were killed.

(Reporting by Jeremy Laurence, editing by Jonathan Thatcher)

FILED UNDER:
Comments (0)
This discussion is now closed. We welcome comments on our articles for a limited period after their publication.

  • Most Popular
  • Most Shared

Ukraine Crisis

REUTERS SHOWCASE

Pakistan Turmoil

Pakistan Turmoil

Pakistan parliament backs embattled prime minister as crisis deepens.  Full Article 

Gaza Conflict

Gaza Conflict

End of Gaza war doesn't translate into peace  Full Article 

Photo

Hamas vs Fatah

Hamas popularity surges as Palestinian rivalry flares  Full Article 

Scottish Independence

Scottish Independence

UK's fate in the balance as poll shows record support for Scottish independence  Full Article 

Syria Aid

Syria Aid

Record 4.1 million in Syria got food aid in August, U.N. says  Full Article 

NATO Deployment

NATO Deployment

Afghan turmoil threatens NATO's "mission accomplished" plans  Full Article 

Reuters India Mobile

Reuters India Mobile

Get the latest news on the go. Visit Reuters India on your mobile device.  Full Coverage