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North Korean malware lurking in computer networks, says U.S.

Staff Writer |
U.S. authorities said malware developed in North Korea is still lurking in many computer networks, giving hackers backdoor access to government, financial, automotive and media organizations.

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An alert issued by the Department of Homeland Security warned of surreptitious activity by the so-called "Hidden Cobra" hacker group, also known by the name "Lazarus," AFP reported.

U.S. officials earlier this year blamed the group for a series of cyberattacks dating back to 2009, saying it was linked to the Pyongyang government.

In Tuesday's warning, the DHS Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT) said the hacker could still maintain a presence on victims' networks with the aim of "further network exploitation."

The report said some networks could be infected with the Volgmer "backdoor Trojan" or a remote administration tool known as Fallchill, which can give hackers complete control of a system.

It said FBI investigators suspect the Fallchill tool has been used since 2016 and Volgmer since 2013.

Private security analysts refer to Hidden Cobra as the "Lazarus" group of hackers linked to North Korea and likely behind a series of multimillion-dollar cyber thefts from banks around the world.

Some analysts say the Lazarus group may also have been behind the WannaCry ransomware outbreak earlier this year.


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