North Korea To Blame For ‘WannaCry’ Cyber Attacks: Microsoft And Facebook Helped Combat Them, Officials Claim

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White House homeland security adviser Tom Bossert claims North Korea is responsible for the “WannaCry” cyber attack. A hacker group associated with the North Korean government is to blame for the attack, Mr. Bossert says.

The homeland security adviser published an op-ed in the Wall Street Journal, officially blaming the Asian country for the attack. On December 19, Tom Bossert and Assistant Secretary at Homeland Security’s Office of Cybersecurity and Communications Jeanette Manfra, held a briefing, further confirming these claims.

Apart from blaming Pyongyang for the attacks, Bossert asserted that Facebook and Microsoft disabled North Korean cyber actions. The homeland security adviser did not go into detail, but he called on other companies to cooperate in cyber security defense, Reuters reports.

It is no secret that governments are shifting focus to cyber warfare, even NATO, the world’s largest intergovernmental military alliance, is officially developing cyber warfare strategies.

North Korea is not the only country Tom Bossert has accused of trying to destabilize the United States through cyber attacks. Russia, China, and Iran have also made the list. Furthermore, Bossert openly praised Donald Trump’s efforts, claiming that the president had taken steps in the right direction, by ordering the modernization of government information technology. This maneuver is meant to enhance security and minimize vulnerabilities of US computer systems.


Who is Tom Bossert?

Tom Bossert served as Deputy Homeland Security Advisor to President George W. Bush and co-authored the National Strategy for Homeland Security in 2007. In July 2017, a British hacker obtained Bossert’s private email address, after fooling Mr. Bossert into thinking that he was Jared Kushner, President Trump’s senior adviser and son-in-law.

What is “WannaCry”?

An elaborate, worldwide cyber attack, “WannaCry” is a ransomware cryptoworm. It targeted Windows OS-powered devices, encrypting data in the process, with the goal of extorting ransom payments. The initial outbreak lasted for 3 days, starting on May 12, 2017. The attack has netted North Korean hackers millions of dollars in cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin, researchers say. Corporations, banks and hospitals all over the world were affected.

The attack was carried out by Lazarus Group, a hacking entity which works for or with the North Korean government, U.S. intelligence agencies claim. The same hacker group is believed to have been responsible for the hack of Sony Pictures Entertainment in 2014.