In an unexpected development, investigations by different security agencies have linked the recent hack on the popular North Korean cryptocurrency exchange CoinEx to a notorious North Korean hacker group known as the Lazarus Group.
According to the current data from SlowMist, the sum taken may have risen to a startling $55 million, unlike initial estimates that put it at roughly $28 million. This hack extends the list of prominent cyberattacks linked to the Lazarus Group, including the most recent Stake.com compromise, which the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has also confirmed.
The CoinEx attack has raised questions about the security of digital assets and the ease at which these cybercriminals operate. CoinEx, in its official statement, has acknowledged that it is carefully observing the issue and intends to publish a detailed report describing the scope of the hack and its effects.
The cryptocurrency community has decried the frequent nature of these attacks on banks, cryptocurrency exchanges, and other financial organizations, which all fingers have pointed at the Lazarus Group, a state-sponsored hacker group with ties to North Korea. Damilola Lawrence from the Cryptopolitan platform has said that the method used by this group has been described as “advanced” and poses a danger to global cybersecurity industry.
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Companies Learn From CoinEx Experience, Calls For Strong Cybersecurity Intensifies
Cybersecurity professionals have noticed patterns and indicators that suggest the gang was involved in the CoinEx breach. Lawrence added that although precise attribution can be difficult, the Lazarus group’s cybercrimes involving cryptocurrencies have continued encouraging widespread rumors.
Several high-profile breaches and frauds have impacted the overall Bitcoin market in recent months. According to data from CertiK, a cybersecurity company, almost $1 billion has been lost due to breaches and scams since January 2023.
Exchanges are faced with renewed pressure from customers to strengthen their security systems and protect customer assets. In response to the current situation, CoinEx has suspended withdrawal and deposit activities and has assured every party of adequate compensation. The blockchain channels affected by the suspension include Polygon, Ethereum, and Tron.
CoinEx Announce Due Compensation, Starts Proper Investigation Into the Attack
Governments and regulatory organizations worldwide have increased their surveillance of the cryptocurrency business. Recall that on the 12th of September, CoinEx took to its X social media handle to announce that their Risk Control System dictated “anomalous withdrawals” from their platform. And they have since assured customers of proper compensation.
They also assured their customers that an investigation has been launched on the development, and prompt feedback will be communicated to each customer in due course. The stolen digital assets include $6 million worth of BTC, $18.5 million worth of ETH, and $6 million worth of XRP.
ZachXBT, the company responsible for investigating the attack on their X handle, confirmed that the hack came from North Korea. They also said that the company (CoinEx) mistakenly linked up with their address, which is linked to a $41 million Stake hack on Polygon and OP.
However, CoinEx has also announced that it will publish a comprehensive report on how the incident took place in due course. Meanwhile, the South Korean government has revealed its interest in reviewing a legislative bill that will track and automatically freeze cryptocurrency assets stolen by the North Korean government through its many state-sponsored hacking groups.