North Korean Hackers to Launch COVID-19 Global Phishing Campaign

A study by cybersecurity provider Cyfirma warned of a massive phishing campaign to be launched by North Korean hacker group Lazarus on June 21. The campaign is supposed to target six nations and more than 5 million companies and individuals.

According to the report released on June 18, Lazarus will subject Singapore, Japan, India, the United Kingdom, South Korea and the United States to a massive phishing campaign. Hackers will try to take advantage of people receiving payments set up by various countries in an attempt to mitigate the COVID-19 crisis.

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A campaign to collect crypto currencies?
Lazarus seems to be impersonating government accounts using fake e-mails. They ask recipients to visit fraudulent websites that ask for money and save their personal data. In the past, North Korean hackers have preferred to be paid in cryptomonies.

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There are no further details on the specific methods that the Lazarus group will use to raise money from its victims.

A Cyfirma spokesman told Cointelegraph:

„On June 1, the platform picked up an early indicator from the Korean-speaking community discussing a folder called ‚Health-Problem-2020‘ and that’s when we discovered the whole campaign aimed at the US, UK, Japan, South Korea, India and Singapore. This global phishing campaign is well planned on all fronts, taking advantage of social engineering to entice individuals and companies to disclose personal and financial information. Citizens and business owners desperately need these government fiscal support packages and the chances of them falling victim to this phishing attack are very high.

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Governments are already aware of the threat
The cybersecurity firm makes it clear that they have not yet seen the URLs of the phishing sites found in the email templates collected during their investigation, but they hope that this information will be revealed soon. They also claim that the governments of the selected countries have been warned about the upcoming Lazarus campaign.

Recently, North Korean leader Kim Jong-un encouraged Lazarus to steal crypto currencies such as Bitcoin (BTC) through phishing scams. Sources indicate that the country has intensified these efforts to prevent a financial collapse during the COVID-19 crisis.