$81m BB heist accused Park Jin Hyok charged in US
Published: 11:41 AM, 18 February 2021 Updated: 11:44 AM, 18 February 2021
Park Jin Hyok, an accused of the 2016 theft of $81 million from the Bangladesh Bank; File Photo
The US Justice Department has charged Park Jin Hyok, a North Korean military intelligence officials, on Wednesday in a campaign of cyberattacks to steal $1.3 billion in crypto and traditional currencies from banks and other targets.
Park Jin Hyok, an accused of the 2016 theft of $81 million from the Bangladesh Bank, the central bank of Bangladesh.
Besides Park Jin Hyok, two others – Jon Chang Hyok and Kim Il - were also charged over the same allegations.
The allegations said the three worked together in the North Korean military intelligence’s hacking-focused Reconnaissance General Bureau, better known within the cybersecurity community as the Lazarus Group, or APT 38.
The charges said Kim Il developed the blockchain-based digital currency-like “Marine Chain Token” which ostensibly was an instrument for investors to buy shares of shipping vessels.
It is to be mentioned that Park Jin Hyok stole about $81 million from Bangladesh Bank’s treasury account on 5 February 2016 with New York’s US Federal Reserve Bank.
According to the Justice Department’s criminal complaint, Park was charged with involvement in the North Korean government-sponsored hacking team known as ‘Lazarus Group’ linked to the 2017 WannaCry 2.0 global ransomware attack, the 2016 Bangladesh Bank theft, and 2014 hit on Sony Pictures Entertainment, among others.
Lazarus and North Korea have long been linked with the Bangladesh Bank attack, which saw hackers use the Swift messaging system to convince the Federal Reserve Bank of New York to transfer $81 million from the victim’s account to accounts they controlled in the Philippines.