U.S. indicts 3 N. Korean hackers for trying to steal $1.3 bln from banks

February 17, 2021

The United States has indicted three North Korean hackers on charges of criminal cyber activities with an attempted amount of US$1.3 billion, the Department of Justice said Wednesday.

The indictment filed in the U.S. District Court in Los Angeles identified the three North Korean suspects as Jon Chang-hyok (31), Kim Il (27) and Park Jin-hyock (36).

They were “members of units of the Reconnaissance General Bureau, a military intelligence agency of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK), which engaged in criminal hacking,” the justice department said in a press release posted on its website.

The department said the three suspects engaged in a wide array of criminal activities that sought to steal up to US$1.3 billion in cash or cryptocurrency from banks and businesses.

Their criminal activities, however, also included the 2014 attack on Sony Pictures Entertainment “in retaliation for ‘The Interview,’ a movie that depicted a fictional assassination of the DPRK’s leader,” it said.