News / Science & Technology

South Korea Warns of Malware in Video Games

FILE - A researcher of Hauri, an IT security software company investigating computer viruses, works at a lab of the company in Seoul March 22, 2013.
FILE - A researcher of Hauri, an IT security software company investigating computer viruses, works at a lab of the company in Seoul March 22, 2013.

Related Articles

German Group Claims to Have Hacked iPhone Fingerprint Scanner

A group of hackers claims they have found a way to make 'fake fingers' that fool the new iPhone's fingerprint scanner

Japan to Upgrade Its Cyberdefense Capabilities

Mounting attacks, now averaging 3,000 per day, are driving Japan to pay more attention to cybersecurity

End of 'Silk Road' as US Shuts Down Black Market Drug Website

In a criminal complaint filed in federal court in New York, FBI agent Christopher Tarbell calls Silk Road 'the most sophisticated and extensive criminal marketplace on the Internet today'
South Korean law enforcement is warning computer uses against downloading uncertified online gaming programs, according to local media.

The National Police Agency said Tuesday that some of the games may have been developed in North Korea and could contain malware that could be used in a cyber attack against the south.

The malware may collect location data and IP addresses and transmit them. The infected computers could also be used to launch distributed denial of service attacks, which use multiple computers to make millions of requests to websites and networks in attempt to overwhelm their capacity to distribute information.

Matthew Aid, an independent intelligence analyst, called the reports “incredible.

“What the North Koreans are doing is something akin to a honey trap for techno-crazed South Koreans,” he said. “No teen will ever pass up an offer for free games online.”

A study conducted in 2009 by the Korea Creative Content Agency concluded that about 7 percent of the nation's primary and secondary schoolchildren are addicted to computer games.

Aid added that it was concerning that “Norton Anti-Virus or the other forms of computer security systems in use in South Korea apparently are not detecting the presence of malware in the game programs being downloaded.”

“I wonder how that is possible. Are the North Korean viruses that sophisticated, or is the current generation of commercial computer security software that far behind the threat?” he said. “The answer may be both, which is really scary.”

North Korea has successfully used games to distribute malware. In June of last year, infected games delivered malware to computers which then launched a denial of service attack on Incheon Airport.

"The use of game applications to carry a malicious payload [malware] is not new, criminal entities do this regularly. North Korea can acquire it from any number of criminal entities or roll-their-own," said Christopher Burgess, CEO of Prevendra, Inc a privacy, intelligence and security entity. "South Korea commercial or government entities have every reason to be wary of a DDOS attack and/or malicious code attempting to exfiltrate commercial or governmental secrets. The bar to entry is not high for any entity, let alone an entity such as North Korea who can devote significant resources to buy or build."

Last March, Seoul also blamed North Korea's military spy agency for a cyber attack that affected 48,000 computers and servers, stalling operations at three top South Korean broadcasters and hampering financial services at banks for several days. Another attack in July was also blamed on Pyongyang.

North Korea is believed to have an elite cyber warfare unit that was suspected of being behind computer attacks on South Korean government agencies and financial institutions in 2009 and 2011.

Pyongyang denies the accusations. It accused the U.S. and South Korea of shutting down some of its own websites in March.

You May Like

At Khmer Rouge Court, Long-Awaited Verdict Approaches

First phase of trial, which is coming to an end, has focused on forced exodus of Phnom Penh in 1975 - and now many are hopeful justice will be served More

Video When Fighting Eases, Gazans Line Up at Bakeries

When there is a lull in the conflict, residents who have been hunkered down in their apartments rush out to stock up on food and other necessities More

Video Information War Rages Alongside Real One in Ukraine

Downing of Malaysian airliner, allegations of cross-border shelling move information war in war-torn country to a new level More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Information War Rages Alongside Real One in Ukrainei
X
Al Pessin
July 31, 2014 8:13 PM
The downing of the Malaysian airliner two weeks ago, and allegations that Russians are shelling Ukrainian troops across the border, have moved the information war swirling around the Ukrainian conflict to a new level. VOA's Al Pessin reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video Information War Rages Alongside Real One in Ukraine

The downing of the Malaysian airliner two weeks ago, and allegations that Russians are shelling Ukrainian troops across the border, have moved the information war swirling around the Ukrainian conflict to a new level. VOA's Al Pessin reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video When Fighting Eases, Gazans Line Up at Bakeries

When there is a lull in the conflict in Gaza, residents who have been hunkered down in their apartments rush out to stock up on food and other necessities. Probably the most important destination is the local bakery. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from Gaza City.
Video

Video US-Funded Program Offers Honduran Children Alternative to Illegal Immigration

President Obama and Central American leaders recently agreed to come up with a plan to address poverty and crime in the region that is fueling the surge of young migrants trying to illegally enter the United States. VOA’s Brian Padden looks at one such program in Honduras - funded in part by the United States - which gives street kids not only food and safety but a chance for a better life without, crossing the border.
Video

Video 'Fab Lab' Igniting Revolution in Kenya

The University of Nairobi’s Science and Technology Park is banking on 3-D prototyping to spark a manufacturing revolution in the country. Lenny Ruvaga has more for from Nairobi's so-called “FabLab” for VOA.
Video

Video Gazans in Shelled School Sought Shelter

Israel's air and ground assault against Hamas-led fighters in Gaza has forced many Palestinians to flee their homes, seeking safety. But safe places are hard to find, as VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from Jabaliya.
Video

Video Rapid Spread of Ebola in West Africa Prompts Global Alert

Across West Africa, health officials are struggling to keep up with what the World Health Organization describes as the worst ebola outbreak on record. The virus has killed hundreds of people this year. U.S. President Barack Obama and other world leaders are watching the developments closely as they weigh what actions, if any, are needed to help contain the disease.
Video

Video Michelle Obama: Young Africans Need to Embrace Women's Rights

U.S. first lady Michelle Obama urged some of Africa's best and brightest to advocate for women's rights in their home countries. As VOA's Pam Dockins explains, Obama spoke to some 500 participants of the Young African Leaders Initiative, a six-week U.S.-based training and development program.
Video

Video Immigrant Influx on Texas Border Heats Up Political Debate

Immigrants from Central America continue to cross the U.S.-Mexico border in south Texas, seeking asylum in the United States, as officials grapple with ways to deal with the problem and provide shelter for thousands of minors among the illegal border crossers. As VOA's Greg Flakus reports from Houston, the issue is complicated by internal U.S. politics and U.S. relations with the troubled nations that immigrants are fleeing.
Video

Video Study: Latino Students Most Segregated in California

Even though legal school segregation ended in the United States 60 years ago, one study finds segregation still occurs in the U.S. based on income and race. The University of California Los Angeles Civil Rights Project finds that students in California are more segregated by race than ever before, especially Latinos. Elizabeth Lee reports for VOA from Los Angeles.

AppleAndroid