North Korea Accused of Hacking South Korean Semiconductor Firms

SEOUL - North Korea has been implicated in cyber attacks against South Korean semiconductor equipment companies, as reported by Seoul's National Intelligence Service (NIS) on Monday. The spy agency disclosed that a North Korean cyber group launched attacks on two South Korean companies in December and February, aiming to steal blueprints and photographs of facilities. The NIS has advised the local semiconductor industry to enhance their cybersecurity in response to these incidents.

According to Yonhap News Agency, the targeted companies were chosen because their servers were connected to the Internet, making them vulnerable to such attacks. The hackers employed a sophisticated method known as "living off the land" (LotL), which utilizes legitimate tools within the victim's system to carry out the attacks, making the malicious activities harder to detect. The intelligence agency suggested that North Korea's interest in obtaining semiconductor technology could be due to difficulties in chip procurement, which have been exacerbated by international sanctions. North Korea appears to be seeking ways to independently produce semiconductors for use in the development of satellites and missiles.

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