In November 2014, North Korea hacks into the computers of Sony Pictures Entertainment, destroying the network and releasing data dumps. The regime takes offense to "The Interview," released at a vulnerable time for Kim Jong Un.
Nuisance to Adversary (03:20)
North Korea's cyber-attack on Sony Pictures is a turning point. Experts reflect on the attack's sophistication. North Korea posts an open letter threatening 9/11 style attacks on theaters.
Leadership Change (05:56)
Kim Jong Un rises to power in 2011. Jean H. Lee reflects on being in Pyongyang during the succession transition. To consolidate power, Kim Jong Un builds relationships and manipulates levels of power; many purges occur. Kim Jong Un projects an image of a modern leader.
North Korea Cyber Operations (06:55)
Kim Jong Un’s regime recognizes internet exploitation opportunities. Hackers target the SWIFT system and steal $81 million. North and South Korea face periods of hostility and peace. Technology is an integral aspect of South Korean culture; the North attempts 1.5 million cyberattacks every day.
Foreign Relations (05:05)
Experts reflect on cultural dynamics in North and South Korea. North Korea's economy collapsed when the Soviet Union fell; its relationship with China is complex. Trading offices conduct legal and illegal business through Office 39.
Disloyalty and Threats (05:08)
North Korea's trade relationship with China is essential. Kim Jong Un views Jang Song-thaek as a threat and executes him. North Korea hacks Sony Pictures Entertainment's computers, releasing a large data dump.
Asymmetric Warfare (05:36)
North Korea uses cyber operations as a weapon; the Reconnaissance General Bureau is the most engaged with the economic aspect. Kim Jong Un expands organized hacking "troops"; most operate outside North Korea. North Korea funnels $10 million from Chile to Hong Kong.
Banking Hack and Ransomware (06:49)
Estimates about how much money North Korea generates through cyberattacks is inevitably incorrect. North Korea attacks India’s Cosmos Bank ATM system. In 2017, the Shadow Brokers release WannaCry; it affects 150 nations. Cyber threats continue. (Credits)
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