U.S. Regulators consider imposing Crypto sanctions on North Korea

Lavina Daryanani
Source: PYMNTS.com

Quite recently, North Korea made its nuclear policy ‘irreversible’ with a new law. The legislation gives North Korea the power to carry out a preventive nuclear strike “automatically” and “immediately to destroy hostile forces” when another country poses an imminent threat to it. Amid negotiation pressures, the U.S. Senate has submitted a North Korea policy oversight bill.

The bill, as such, requires that a report on North Korea’s nuclear threat situation, US negotiations with North Korea, and economic pressure on North Korea with its allies be submitted to Congress every six months for two years after the law goes into effect.

Apart from that, there was a part of the bill that stressed on cryptocurrencies. Via the bill, the proposers—Robert Menendez and Bill Hagerty—proposed the government impose sanctions on North Korea for using crypto to dodge international sanctions against it.

Per a local media report,

“The bill also stipulated that sanctions would be imposed on the use of cryptocurrencies used by North Korea to evade international sanctions against North Korea.”

$1 Billion wiped out from DeFi protocols by North Korean hackers

Sanctions, as such, have isolated North Korea from global sources of finance. In such an environment, Pyongyang’s army of hackers has been increasingly exploiting vulnerabilities, targeting crypto accounts around the world, and executing hacks.

A recent report from TradingPlatforms brought to light that North Korea-linked groups have stolen approximately $1 billion From DeFi Protocols this year. Specialized hacking groups, as such, have been able to execute attacks involving vast sums of funds.

Earlier this year, for instance, North Korea’s Lazarus group was reportedly held accountable for being associated with the $600 million Ronin Bridge heist. Last week, however, U.S. authorities recovered $30M worth of crypto from them.

Read More: U.S Seizes $30 Million in Crypto from North Korean-linked Hackers

TradingPlatforms’ analyst—Edith Reads—said that attacks on DeFi platforms have mostly been “organized” and “coordinated.” Nevertheless, the analyst believes that the precautionary measures in play could be a game changer. Elaborating on the same, he said,

“There has been a series of attacks on DeFi platforms. The attacks seem well organized and coordinated. However, there are measures in place by different players in the crypto space to overcome this. $30 million of stolen crypto recovered from North Korean hackers gives hope. It is a win for every crypto enthusiast. It will boost confidence among the crypto investors and even attract those with reservations on crypto security.”