One of Japan’s biggest cryptocurrency exchanges, Coincheck, was hacked last month. Hackers stole digital currency worth $530 million and while no one came forward to claim responsibility for the hack, South Korea’s intelligence agency believes that North Korean hackers might have been behind the massive hack. Citing people in the know, Reuters reports that South Korean intelligence officials said during recent intelligence committee proceedings in the country’s parliament that it’s a possibility that North Korean hackers could have been behind the hack.
The scribe also reports that while the country’s National Intelligence Service didn’t present any evidence to support the theory during the proceedings but it did flag it as a possibility. The claim is backed up by local media reports in South Korea which reported that the intelligence agency had told the parliament’s committee that North Korean hackers had “probably” hacked the Coincheck exchange based in Tokyo.
This isn’t the first time that North Korea is being blamed for a massive cyberattack. The United States has publicly pointed the finger at the world’s most isolated country for launching the WannaCry ransomware cyberattack that crippled companies, banks, hospitals, and other services last year.
Kim Byung-kee, a South Korean lawmaker, has said that the North Koreans are responsible for billions lost in theft from local cryptocurrency exchanges last year without disclosing which South Korea-based exchanges were hacked.
Japan has since gone tough on cryptocurrency exchanges based in the country to improve security protocols but it’s yet to formally assign blame for the massive hack to any individual or country.