April 19, 2024
Lazarus Group Amasses $40M+ in Bitcoin, Data Reveals.
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Lazarus Group Amasses $40M+ in Bitcoin, Data Reveals

The Lazarus Group, a North Korean hacking collective, currently holds approximately $47 million in cryptocurrency, with the majority of it in Bitcoin, according to recent data.

Data compiled on Dune Analytics by 21.co, the parent company of 21Shares, reveals that wallets associated with the Lazarus Group contain around $47 million worth of digital assets. This includes $42.5 million in Bitcoin (BTC), $1.9 million in Ethereum (ETH), $1.1 million in Binance Coin (BNB), and an additional $640,000 in stablecoins, primarily Binance USD. However, it’s worth noting that the amount of cryptocurrency held by the group has decreased from the $86 million it held on September 6th, shortly after its involvement in the Stake.com hack.

The Dune dashboard tracks 295 wallets that have been identified by the United States Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) as belonging to the hacking group. Interestingly, the Lazarus Group does not seem to hold any privacy coins, like Monero, Dash, or Zcash, which are generally more challenging to trace. Despite this, the group’s cryptocurrency wallets remain highly active, with the most recent transaction recorded on September 20th.

21.co also suggests that the group’s actual holdings are likely higher than what has been reported, stating, “We should note that this is a lower-bound estimation of Lazarus Group’s crypto holdings based on publicly available information.” In a previous report, it was revealed that Lazarus Group was responsible for the attack on the cryptocurrency exchange CoinEx, resulting in losses of at least $55 million.

The FBI has also attributed a series of hacks, including those on Alphapo, CoinsPaid, and Atomic Wallet, to the Lazarus Group, with a cumulative theft of more than $200 million in 2023.

Despite these incidents, Chainalysis reported that cryptocurrency thefts by North Korea-linked hackers have decreased significantly, with an 80% drop from 2022. As of mid-September, these groups had stolen a total of $340.4 million in cryptocurrency, down from the record $1.65 billion stolen in digital assets in 2022.

Recently, U.S. federal authorities issued a warning of a “significant risk” of potential attacks on U.S. healthcare and public health sector entities by the Lazarus Group.

Photo by Tima Miroshnichenko

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