The FBI says a North Korea-linked hacker group is behind the theft of a US crypto company by Reuters

© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: The North Korean flag flies at a propaganda village in Gyeongdong, North Korea, in this photo taken near the truce village of Panmunjom inside the Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) separating the two Koreas, South Korea, July 19, 2022. REUTERS

(This story was officially corrected on January 23 to say ONE hacker group, not two, in the title and paragraph 1)

(Reuters) – The FBI said Monday that a North Korean-linked hacker group, the Lazarus Group, also known as APT38, was responsible for the theft of $100 million last June from the US cryptocurrency’s Horizon Bridge.

On January 13, North Korean internet actors used a privacy protocol called Railgun to launder more than $60 million in Ethereum stolen during a robbery in June, the FBI said in a statement.

The FBI said that a portion of the stolen Ethereum was later sent to several virtual asset providers and converted into bitcoin.

The FBI said North Korea’s theft and laundering of virtual currency is being used to support its ballistic missile and weapons of mass destruction programs.

In June last year, California-based Harmony said a theft had hit its Horizon Bridge, the underlying software used by digital tokens like bitcoin and ether to transfer cryptocurrencies between different blockchains.

Reuters reported in June that North Korean hackers were likely behind the attack on Harmony, citing three digital investigation firms.

Harmony is developing blockchain for decentralized finance — peer-to-peer sites that offer loans and other services without traditional gatekeepers like banks — and non-fungible tokens.

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