Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 12 July 2014

Anonymous 'hacks' North Korea website and Twitter account

Image posted by Anonymous on North Korea's Flickr account
Image posted by Anonymous on North Korea's Flickr account

Hactivist group Anonymous has apparently hacked at least two of North Korea's government-run online sites yesterday, as tensions rose on the Korean Peninsula.

The North's Uriminzokkiri Twitter and Flickr accounts stopped sending out content typical of that posted by the regime in Pyongyang, such as photos of North's leader Kim Jong Un meeting military officials.

Instead, a picture posted on the North's Flickr site shows Kim's face with a pig-like snout and a drawing of Mickey Mouse on his chest. Underneath, the text reads: "Threatening world peace with ICBMs and Nuclear weapons/Wasting money while his people starve to death."

Another posting says "We are Anonymous" in white letters against a black background. Anonymous is a name of a hacker activist group.

Tweets on the North's Twitter account said "Hacked" followed by a link to North Korea-related websites.

In statements circulated online (here and here) the group said that they had compromised 15,000 user records hosted on Uriminzokkiri.com and other websites.

It said: "To the citizens of North Korea we suggest to rise up and bring those mother******s of a oppressive government down...We are holding your back and your hand, while you take the journey to freedom, democracy and peace. Do not fear us, we are not terrorist, we are the good guys from the internet."

Anonymous claims to have "a few guys on the ground" in North Korea, who "managed to bring the real internet into the country using a chain of long distance Wi-Fi repeaters with proprietary frequencies, so they're not jammed (yet)."

The group said it also has access to North Korean landlines that connected to Kwangmyong, the country's national Intranet.

Uriminzokkiri, a North Korea government-run agency, opened its Twitter account in 2010, and has more than 13,000 followers.

The North uses social media to praise its system and leaders, and to repeat commentaries sent out by North's official Korean Central News Agency.

Tensions have been high in recent days between North and South Korea, and the North's military warned yesterday that it had been authorised to attack the US.

North Korea is angry about sanctions against its nuclear programme and joint military drills between the US and South Korea.

North and South have fired claims of cyberattacks at each other recently. Last month computers froze at six major South Korean companies - three banks and three television networks - and North Korea's Internet shut down.

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