Crypto Crimes: A Growing Target of Hacker Gangs in 2020

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Crypto Crime skyrocketed in 2020

The USA Herald reported on a Federal indictment unsealed in February. The indictment was filed against members of the “Lazarus Group,” a North Korean government-backed hacker gang. The group is a reflection of the growing vector of ‘cryptocurrency crimes’.

Assistant Attorney General John C. Demers of the Justice Department’s National Security Division explained the crime spree. “North Korea’s operatives are using keyboards rather than guns. Stealing digital wallets of cryptocurrency instead of sacks of cash. They are now the world’s leading bank robbers.”

Their crimes include a series of bank breaches since 2014 that netted 1.3 billion. They also infected ATMs with WannaCry Ransomware. And this allows for unlimited withdrawals. The gang also distributed fake crypto apps that opened backdoors into users’ computer networks.

The busy hacker gang was able to hack $75 million from a Slovenian cryptocurrency company, swipe $24.9 million from a well-known Indonesian crypto firm, and steal $11.8 million from a New York-based fintech services company, between 2017 and 2020.