The infamous North Korean state-sponsored threat actor Lazarus Group is getting ready to dump $41 million worth of Bitcoin on the market, a new Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) report has claimed.
The U.S. federal law enforcement agency recently issued a warning, saying it observed Bitcoin stolen last year moving to different wallets:
"Over the last 24 hours, the FBI tracked cryptocurrency stolen by the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) TraderTraitor-affiliated actors (also known as Lazarus Group and APT38)," the warning reads. "The FBI believes the DPRK may attempt to cash out the bitcoin worth more than $40 million dollars."
A warning to trading platforms
The FBI says it’s tracking approximately 1,580 Bitcoin as it’s being moved to six separate wallets:
The law enforcement agency is now urging cryptocurrency trading platforms and other firms dealing with the nascent technology to be careful when receiving Bitcoin and to analyze the blockchain data to make sure they’re not laundering money stolen in various hacks and scams.
"The FBI will continue to expose and combat the DPRK's use of illicit activities—including cybercrime and virtual currency theft—to generate revenue for the regime," the FBI concluded.
Lazarus Group is one of the deadliest threat actors out there, whose campaigns netted hundreds of millions of dollars in stolen cryptocurrencies. The North Korean state-sponsored actor was responsible for the attack on the Ronin Network, which resulted in the theft of more than $600 million. Lazarus was also responsible for the attack on Harmony bridge, in which it walked away with roughly $100 million.
In many instances, Lazarus impersonated large cryptocurrency firms and approached crypto developers on LinkedIn with seemingly lucrative job offers. Gullible developers were delivered malware, which allowed Lazarus’ operatives to infiltrate different networks, infect endpoints, and ultimately - steal money. Some researchers believe the money is being spent on North Korea’s weapons program.
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Sead is a seasoned freelance journalist based in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina. He writes about IT (cloud, IoT, 5G, VPN) and cybersecurity (ransomware, data breaches, laws and regulations). In his career, spanning more than a decade, he’s written for numerous media outlets, including Al Jazeera Balkans. He’s also held several modules on content writing for Represent Communications.