South Korea issued further penalties on Friday against Kimsuky, a North Korean hacker organisation accused of involvement in the North’s latest satellite launch attempt.
According to a joint advisory issued by the US and South Korea, the group undertakes “large-scale” cyber attacks on think tanks, academic institutions, and news outlets.
The hackers are known to conduct spear phishing campaigns posing as real journalists, academics, or other individuals with credible links to North Korean policy circles, Seoul’s foreign ministry said.
North Korea launched its first surveillance satellite into space on Wednesday, but the mission was a failure, with the launcher and payload crashing into the sea.
The US, South Korea and Japan said any launch by Pyongyang using ballistic missile technology violates multiple UN Security Council resolutions.
The fresh penalties, according to South Korea’s government, indicate Seoul’s determination to hold North Korea accountable for its provocations.
North Korea rebuffed Washington’s and other countries’ condemnation of the launch on Thursday, saying it had a sovereign right to space research and promising to launch a spy satellite shortly.