Lone Hacker Claims Responsibility for Turning Off North Korea’s Internet: Report

  • A lone hacker is claiming responsibility for crippling North Korea’s internet in recent weeks.
  • The American hacker was bent on revenge after being targeted by a North Korean cyberattack, according to Wired. 
  • North Korea’s internet has been going down in what some experts have said may be a distributed denial-of-service attack. 

North Korea disappeared from the internet at least twice in the last month, with state-run websites becoming inaccessible, in what some observers speculated was a distributed denial-of-service attack on the country’s servers. Now, a lone hacker bent on revenge claims he is responsible for crippling the secretive country’s internet, according to a report from Wired. 

The American hacker — who goes by the handle P4x — explained to Wired that he was one of the victims of a 2021 cyberattack on Western security researchers carried out by North Korean spies and was frustrated by not only being targeted but also the apparent lack of a response from the US government.

He said that the hackers tried to snatch hacking tools and information on software vulnerabilities, but he was able to stop them before they could get anything worthwhile. Nonetheless, there was a feeling of resentment, Wired reported.

“It felt like the right thing to do here,” P4x told Wired, adding that “if they don’t see we have teeth, it’s just going to keep coming.”

“I want them to understand that if you come at us, it means some of your infrastructure is going down for a while,” he said.

North Korea’s mysterious internet outages appeared around the same time the country was conducting record-breaking illegal weapons testing, firing off missile after missile. The timing of these developments led some expert observers to suspect that a state actor, such as the US, might be targeting North Korea, but P4x says that is not the case.

Wired reported that P4x provided screen recordings demonstrating his responsibility for the attacks on North Korea’s web servers. Insider has not personally reviewed these. 

While the hacker was open about carrying out the attacks, P4x declined to reveal the vulnerabilities in the North Korean system he found and exploited to single-handedly take down the entire country’s internet on multiple occasions. He did, however, reveal that the attack was largely automated. 

He told Wired it was “pretty interesting how easy it was to actually have some effect in there.” 

P4x also told Wired he is trying to recruit more “hacktivists” to join a dark website he launched earlier this week called the FUNK project — meaning FU North Korea. 

 “You can make a difference as one person,” the FUNK website reads, according to the report from Wired. “The goal is to perform proportional attacks and information-gathering in order to keep NK from hacking the western world completely unchecked.”

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