According to Reuters, Cryptocurrency prices have been surging in global markets which has been a target for ordinary retail investors as well as a cybercrime gang traced to the North Korean government. Cyber researchers have been tracing The Lazarus cybercrime group after an ongoing scheme to steal online credentials of bitcoin industry insiders. Cybersecurity firms such as Secureworks believe that North Korea is behind crime gang that was linked to a $81 million cyber heist just last year. The country’s interest in cryptocurrency remains at an all time high ever since the current increase in bitcoin prices. Last month’s price jumped past $10,000 and has continued to move upward towards $20,000. On Friday, a single bitcoin traded above $17,500 which is up more than 7% on the day and more than 18 times in the year to date.
Last month, Secureworks monitored a targeted email campaign hoping to trick victims into clicking on a link for a job opening at a cryptocurrency firm. Those who clicked on this link were infected by a malicious code thus allowing hackers to further download malware and steal data. This malware links back to Lazarus and researchers still believe the efforts to steal credentials are still on-going. Other interferences with several bitcoin exchanges in South Korea have also traced back to North Korea.
“Given the current rise in bitcoin prices, CTU suspects that North Korea’s interest in cryptocurrency remains high and (it) is likely continuing its activities surrounding the cryptocurrency,” Secureworks said in a statement to Reuters.