According to some estimates, total income from cryptocurrency transactions in North Korea last year reached $ 200 million.
In an interview with radio station «Free Asia» a former employee of the national security Agency USA (NSA) Moriuchi Priscilla (Priscilla Moriuchi) said that the country is circulating approximately 11,000 BTC. Morici suggested that the cryptocurrency enters the country due to mining and attacks by hackers.
«I’m willing to bet that these coins were transferred to something for money or material goods – that supports North Korean missile and nuclear program…,» she says.
Recall that for several years in connection with the nuclear missile programme of the DPRK, a number of countries and international organizations are used against the country’s various sanctions. The administration trump is trying to reduce the number of applicants to North Korea means as long as the country is ready to embark on the path of negotiations. However, these measures have not yet proved its effectiveness. Meanwhile, according to Moriuchi, North Korea will try to avoid financial constraints using cryptocurrency.
North Korea has repeatedly accused of involvement in cybercrime. One example is virus-extortionist 2017 WannaCry, infitsirovanii more than 230,000 computers in 150 countries. In December, the U.S. accused North Korea in the cyber attack, which killed commercial companies, schools and hospitals.
Presumably, then, the North Korean hackers have organized another attack in which the South Korean cryptocurrency exchange YouBit lost bitcoins equivalent to $ 7 million. After that, the exchange was forced to file for bankruptcy. Recently appeared information that the hackers from North Korea can be involved in the hacking of the Japanese cryptocurrency exchange Coincheck, which in January of this year was stolen tokens for NEM $ 530 million.
Despite the fact that Pyongyang denies such information, rumor has it that the country has chosen a few talented students to work in the Unit 121, whose tasks include the conduct of military cyber operations. Reportedly, freely regulated industry, having the ability to convert cryptocurrency into Fiat, is for North Korea is very attractive solution.
Thus, despite calls by world leaders to cooperate in the regulation of the cryptocurrency market, it seems that the international sanctions are no longer a threat, as the use of cryptocurrencies provides a great way to get around them.