SEOUL (Reuters) – The United States, South Korea and Japan expressed deep concern over North Korea’s “malicious” cyber activities to support its weapons programmes, in comments released in a joint statement on Friday.
Crypto currency funds stolen by North Korean hackers have been a key source for financing the sanctions-stricken country’s weapons programmes, officials and experts in the U.S. and its allies say.
“We reiterate with concern that overseas DPRK IT workers continue using forged identities and nationalities” to evade U.N. sanctions and raise funds for missile programmes, according to the statement, using the acronym for North Korea’s official name.
“We are also deeply concerned about how the DPRK supports these programmes by stealing and laundering funds as well as gathering information through malicious cyber activities,” the statement said.
South Korea’s nuclear envoy held talks with his U.S. and Japanese counterparts in Seoul this week and condemned North Korea’s weapons tests.
(Reporting by Soo-hyang Choi and Ju-min Park; Editing by Muralikumar Anantharaman and Kenneth Maxwell)