Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?


North Korean hackers, not nukes, threaten UK the most – Report

Cyberattacks from the hermit kingdom are “far more likely” than a nuclear missile attack, says a Defence Committee report.

The UK faces a greater threat form a North Korean cyberattack than a nuclear missile, according to a Defence Committee report.

MPs have asked whether North Korea is “rash or rational” as part of their inquiry into the country’s nuclear capabilities and its cyber arsenal.

They reported that the UK is unlikely to be targeted by a missile strike from the country – although Pyongyang may soon develop this capability. Instead, the UK is far more likely to suffer from “reckless cyberattacks.

North Korea has been conducting its nuclear weapons programme for over a quarter of a century, the MPs said, and was capable of reprocessing weapons-grade plutonium by the early 1990s.

NHS computer systems were crippled last year after being infected by the WannaCry ransomware worm that had been developed by North Korea.

The cyber attack crippled NHS computer systems
Image:North Korea developed the WannaCry malware which crippled NHS computer systems

The MPs said that North Korea rapidly developed its cyber capability since the early 1990s and that this capability had “crept up” on the UK following a high-profile attack on Sony in 2014.

North Korea currently has sophisticated organisations conducting cyber operations on its behalf, with an estimated 6,800 staff involved in its hacking teams.

Nigel Inkster, the former director of operations and intelligence for MI6, told the committee that one of the North Korean cyber units had an operational base in a hotel in China.

Advertisement. Scroll to continue reading.

Mr Inkster said that “its activities must be known to the Chinese, given the bandwidth required and the close monitoring of web usage by the Chinese government”, according to the committee.

The MPs added that the UK might be able to provide significant offensive cyber capability in response to North Korea, but as such tools had never yet been tested it wasn’t clear what effect it would have.

Additional investment in the UK’s cyber defences was required, said the MPs, and this needed to be sourced from outside of the existing defence budget.

They added that the lack of skilled staff is a concern for the UK’s cyber capability development – echoing a worry the UK cyber security community has voiced for years.

Wanna cry cyber attack

Last October, Security Minister Ben Wallace said: “We can be as sure as possible – I can’t obviously go into the detailed intelligence but it is widely believed in the community and across a number of countries that North Korea had taken this role.”

The minister commented after the National Audit Office (NAO) warned the Government and NHS to “get their act together” to prevent future attacks.

An NAO report found computers at one third of health trusts across England were infected, along with computers at almost 600 GP surgeries.

The Defence Committee chairman Julian Lewis said the threats posed by North Korea were “typical of the new and intensifying dangers confronting the UK”.

He added: “There is cross-party consensus that we need to invest much more than the NATO minimum of 2% of GDP.

Advertisement. Scroll to continue reading.



You May Also Like


Professing to be the lead in Thai relationship with over 1.5 million enrolled single people, Cupid Media’s ThaiCupid brings the one in every of...


An exclusive article form Orestis Karipis In the 1930’s and 1940’s acid was the weapon of deceived husbands and wives in the Western world...


Read more about switzerland women here. Swiss ladies and men are not reknown for being the most chatty, outgoing or spontaneous when meeting strangers...


In food, if there is one thing you can say without fear of contradiction, it is this: Britain loves burgers. The UK market is...

Copyright © 2020 All Rights Reserved