• South Korean officials’ emails have been hacked by a “North Korean-operated group” , a report said
  • Korean Police: North’s main spy agency is behind the attack
  • NoKor operates with more than 1,000 hackers  –  South’s spy agency

Email accounts of some 56 South Koreans including officials at the foreign defense and unification ministries has been hacked, as disclosed in  a report by South’s Yonhap news agency on Monday.

The passwords of the said email accounts were purported to have been stolen by a “North Korean-operated group” after conducting a series of suspected cyber attacks from January to June according to the Supreme Prosecutor’s Office.

Yonhap reported that 27 phishing websites were put up by the hackers via free-web hosting server and posed as portal sites run by the foreign ministry, universities and defense related companies to steal passwords.

The phishing websites have already been shut down by the prosecutors with the partnership of the National Security Service and the Korea Internet and Security Agency.

Investigations of the National Police Agency said that the North’s main spy agency — the Reconnaissance General Bureau —was behind the attack as the codes and Internet protocol address used is similar to the previous on-line attacks done by North Korea.

As per South’s spy agency, North operates with an army of more than 1,000 hackers who organize hacking or cyber attacks targeting Seoul’s major institutions or key officials.

The tension between the North and South peninsula escalated after Pyongyang carried out its fourth nuclear test in January, followed by a series of ballistic missile tests.

Seoul is blaming Pyongyang for the series of cyber-attacks on military institutions, banks, state agencies, TV broadcasters, media websites and a nuclear power plant.

An ongoing investigation is being conducted to find out if there are any confidential information that have been leaked.