U.S. Charges North Korean in Sony Hack and WannaCry Virus Attack

Sony Hack GOP

Sony Hack GOP

Sony Pictures was targeted in another hack blamed on the North Korean group in 2014.

In the attack on Sony, hackers wiped data from thousands of computers, stole and released films confidential emails whose contents forced the resignation of a top executive, and most alarming of all, pressured the Hollywood studio to pull a satirical film planned for a Christmas release depicting the assassination of leader Kim Jong-Un.

"The complaint charges members of this North Korean-based conspiracy with being responsible for cyberattacks that caused unprecedented economic damage and disruption to businesses in the United States and around the globe", First Assistant United States Attorney Tracy Wilkison said in a statement.

Park is also charged with being involved in numerous other attacks, including an alleged targeting of South Korean figures and Lockheed Martin, which officials noted runs a missile defense system in South Korea.

It is unlikely Park will be extradited since the USA has no formal relations with North Korea.

The U.S. Justice and Treasury Departments said Park Jin Hyok was "part of the conspiracy" that masterminded those notorious hacks "on behalf of the Government of North Korea or the Workers' Party of Korea". It also led to the cancelled release of the film The Interview. "Despite efforts to hide his identity and the subjects' efforts to isolate the Chosun Expo Accounts from operational accounts that they used with aliases to carry on their hacking operations", the Federal Bureau of Investigation affidavit states, "there are numerous connections between these sets of accounts".

North Korea has always been suspected - and accused - of having carried out the Sony hack and being behind the WannaCry ransomware but today those accusations were made formal.

Park Jin Hyok is said to be linked to the Lazarus Group.

According to the 176-page indictment, Park worked for Chosun Expo Joint Venture, a company tied to a North Korean military intelligence unit called Lab 110.

"The criminal conduct outlined in this case is intolerable", said Tracy Wilkison, the first assistant USA attorney in Los Angeles.

The Associated Press reported that a North Korean who is believed to have operated out of China will be among those charged.

"The department has charged, arrested and imprisoned hackers working for the governments of China, Russia and Iran".

A month later, U.S. officials blamed North Korea for the attack, an accusation backed by several organisations, including one linked to the South Korean government.

No North Korean government officials were referenced in the complaint by name, though it does allege the government sponsored the attacks.

In 2014, for instance, the Obama administration charged five Chinese military hackers with a series of digital break-ins at American companies, and previous year, the Justice Department charged Russian hackers with an intrusion at Yahoo Inc.

Officials insist that the timing of the unsealing of the criminal complaint has nothing to do with the June summit between North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and President Trump, or with the push to denuclearize the Korean Peninsula.

Recommended News

  • Burt Reynolds Dead: Veteran Actor Dies At 82

    Burt Reynolds Dead: Veteran Actor Dies At 82

    Actor Burt Reynolds , who played good ol' boys and rugged action heroes in an acting career that spanned seven decades, has died. However, it's the roles that Burt Reynolds turned down during the height of his fame that might be more noteworthy.
    White House Denies John Kelly Called Trump an 'Idiot'

    White House Denies John Kelly Called Trump an 'Idiot'

    Mattis agreed with the president, and said he would "get right on it" according to the newspaper. They are quoted as calling him an "idiot" and a "liar".
    Stolen Ruby Slippers Are Recovered After 'Extortion Plot,' FBI Says

    Stolen Ruby Slippers Are Recovered After 'Extortion Plot,' FBI Says

    A fan offered a $1 million reward for a short period before the 10-year anniversary of the robbery, but no-one came forward. Toward the end of the movie, Glinda the Good Witch revealed to Dorothy that her magic slippers could take her back home.
  • The Bale, Messi, Ronaldo and Salah strikes among Puskas Award nominees

    The Bale, Messi, Ronaldo and Salah strikes among Puskas Award nominees

    Cristiano Ronaldo is in the top 10 thanks to his overhead kick against Juventus for former club Real Madrid . He was runner-up in 2007 and 2008 before winning the title for the first of five years in 2009.
    Meghan meets seriously ill children with Prince Harry, wearing bold trouser suit

    Meghan meets seriously ill children with Prince Harry, wearing bold trouser suit

    Realising her mistake, Meghan bashfully smiled and put her hand to her heart - much to the amusement of those around her. A never-before-seen photo of Meghan Markle watching TV with her goddaughter has been unearthed on social media.

    'The Bachelor': Colton Underwood to Be Season 23 Star of ABC Series

    One of the big issues for Underwood, which endeared him to many fans, was his virginity and staying true to that part of himself. When Tia asked if he could say that he tried, Colton said, "I could look at you 100% certain and say that".
  • Trump criticizes A.G. Sessions for charges against Rep. Collins

    Trump criticizes A.G. Sessions for charges against Rep. Collins

    The president cited what he called "Obama era investigations" just before midterm elections and that "two easy wins now in doubt". Mueller is now leading the investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election.
    Kavanaugh's Testimony on Executive Power [Updated with Material from the Afternoon Session]

    Kavanaugh's Testimony on Executive Power [Updated with Material from the Afternoon Session]

    Democratic Senators mulled making an even more dramatic scene, according to Politico report published Tuesday night. Wade , the 1973 landmark case that legalized abortion. "Precedent is rooted right in the Constitution itself".
    Colin Kaepernick Unveils New Nike ‘Just Do It’ Ad

    Colin Kaepernick Unveils New Nike ‘Just Do It’ Ad

    Colin Kaepernick is a featured athlete on Nike's new slate of "Just Do It" advertisements, which commemorate the 30th anniversary of the iconic slogan's 1988 debut, ESPN reported Monday.
  • Cory Booker: I'm Breaking Senate Rules on Brett Kavanaugh

    Cory Booker: I'm Breaking Senate Rules on Brett Kavanaugh

    Wade decision Kavanaugh said that he understands "how passionate and how deeply people feel about this issue" of abortion. He publicly released 12 pages of emails sent by Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh dealing with racial inequality.
    Fire engulfs National Museum in Brazil

    Fire engulfs National Museum in Brazil

    The museum's decline did not happen overnight, said Renato Rodriguez Cabral, a teacher in the geology and paleontology department. The building was initially built as the palace for the royal family back in 1818 but has operated as a museum since 1982.
    Trump attacks union leader on Labor Day

    Trump attacks union leader on Labor Day

    Philip Levy, senior fellow at the Chicago Council on Global Affairs and a White House economist under President George W. Continetti said the key to Trump's recent trade negotiations was concentrating on Mexico and leaving Canada to one side.

We are pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news.
Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper.
Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.