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Researchers mull North Korea link to cyber attack

Tuesday, May 16, 2017 - 01:51

Cyber security researchers have found technical evidence they say could link North Korea with the global WannaCry ''ransomware'' cyber attack that has infected more than 300,000 computers in 150 countries since Friday. As Ryan Brooks reports, Symantec and Kaspersky Lab said that some code in an earlier version of the WannaCry software had also appeared in programs used by the Lazarus Group.

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The ongoing global cyber attack may have some North Korean fingerprints... The WannaCry ransomware worm spread like wildfire beginning last week... locking down computers unless you pay attackers to get back your data. But on Monday leading cyber security researchers say they've found some familiar codes in the virus... seen in alleged attacks by Lazarus Group, believed to be a North Korea-run hacking operation. (SOUNDBITE) (English) SYMANTEC RESEARCHER, ERIC CHIEN, SAYING: "They first came on to our radar when the Sony attack happened. They basically broke into Sony networks and overwrote all of their files bringing down there whole computing infrastructure. They also did a massive what we call 'wiping attack' on the South Korean broadcasters and also South Korean banks. And most recently, they had been pinned against attacks in Bangladesh on the bank of Bangladesh where they tried to transfer one billion dollars. They made some typos and successfully transferred out $81 million." At its peak last week the virus hit 9,000 computers per hour experts were impressed at how fast it surged around the globe... But the motive behind WannaCry is still unclear- especially since it hasn't made much money. (SOUNDBITE) (English) SYMANTEC RESEARCHER, ERIC CHIEN, SAYING: "This is not the kind of thing a very professional cyber criminal would do. Guys who are involved in these types of schemes like to run just under the radar. As soon as you add something like an exploit that allows it to spread indiscriminately like we saw with WannaCry, then it becomes extremely high profile and the last thing you want to be when you are a cyber criminal is high profile." Microsoft says the attack made use of a hacking tool built by America's NSA that leaked online last month. That's poured fuel on the political fire... On Monday President Trump's homeland security chief tried to distance the agency from blame- -saying the tool was never meant to hold data ransom.

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Researchers mull North Korea link to cyber attack

Tuesday, May 16, 2017 - 01:51