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US Blames North Korea for Global Cyber Attack

  • VOA News

FILE - A screenshot shows a WannaCry ransomware demand, provided by cyber security firm Symantec, in Mountain View, California, May 15, 2017.

The United States is publicly blaming North Korea for unleashing a cyber attack that crippled hospitals, banks and other companies across the globe earlier this year.

In an op-ed piece posted on the Wall Street Journal website Monday night, Homeland Security Adviser Tom Bossert said that North Korea was "directly responsible'' for the WannaCry ransomware attack, and that Pyongyang will be held accountable for it.

"The attack was widespread and cost billions, and North Korea is directly responsible," Bossert writes. "North Korea has acted especially badly, largely unchecked, for more than a decade, and its malicious behavior is growing more egregious."

FILE - Patients wait near a banner informing of a delay in service due to a cyberattack at the Dharmais Cancer Hospital in Jakarta, Indonesia, May 15, 2017.
FILE - Patients wait near a banner informing of a delay in service due to a cyberattack at the Dharmais Cancer Hospital in Jakarta, Indonesia, May 15, 2017.

Bossert says President Donald Trump's administration will continue to use its "maximum pressure strategy to curb Pyongyang's ability to mount attacks, cyber or otherwise.''

Pyongyang has previously denied being responsible for the attack.

But, the U.S. government has assessed with a "very high level of confidence" that a hacking entity known as Lazarus Group, which works on behalf of the North Korean government, carried out the WannaCry attack, senior officials told Reuters.

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