Elliptic Report Reveals North Korea’s Involvement in 30% of Japan’s Crypto Hacks

Japanese institutions and individuals have suffered the highest losses from North Korean cyberattacks on cryptocurrency exchanges. Recent reports indicate that Japan incurred approximately 30% of the total losses attributed to North Korean crypto hacking. Despite the Japanese government being vocal about the need for enhanced cybersecurity measures to combat these malicious activities, Japanese exchanges have been a primary target. The Elliptic report reveals that Japan suffered a staggering $721 million in losses, accounting for about 30% of the total amount hacked globally. Hacks occurred between 2017 and 2022, reaching a total amount of $2.3 billion. The digital asset ecosystem lost an estimated $640 million worth of cryptocurrency in 2022 alone. The United Nations has also revealed that digital currency theft exploits in North Korea hit a new high in 2022, with Vietnam being the second most attacked nation, losing approximately $540 million within the same period. The United States was the third nation on the list, followed by Hong Kong, with $497 million and $281 million losses, respectively. According to Elliptic findings, both the Japanese and Vietnamese cryptocurrency markets have lax security measures, making them attractive targets for hackers seeking to exploit weaknesses and gains access to digital assets. The significant losses incurred by Japan reflect the growing threat posed by North Korean hacking groups, which have increasingly targeted cryptocurrency exchanges and platforms worldwide.

The Lazarus Group, believed to act on behalf of the North Korean regime to bypass international sanctions and fund illicit activities, has orchestrated some of the most significant exploits in the cryptocurrency world. The Ronin Bridge exploit and the Harmony Bridge hack are among their audacious heists. North Korean hackers have also been engaging in the theft of Non-fungible tokens (NFTs) and demonstrated a remarkably sophisticated strategy for laundering their ill-gotten gains. They employed decentralized crypto mixers and finance services to launder the origins of the stolen funds, making it incredibly challenging to trace their illicit activities. This method allowed them to convert the stolen cryptocurrency into untraceable forms, further complicating any attempts to recover the stolen assets.

J-S Tremblay
About the author - J-S Tremblay

I've been involved in the cryptocurrency world since 2016 and trading since 2019. I started Moon and Lambo in 2021. I'm passionate about crypto and love to share my knowledge. I hate bankers and I hope that cryptocurrency will change the financial world for the better. View full profile...

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