Over US$30 million worth of cryptocurrency stolen by North Korea-linked hackers has been seized by law enforcement, with the help of crypto organizations like the Chainalysis Crypto Incident Response Team.

See related article: North Korea behind Ronin hack: US

Fast facts

  • This marks the first time that digital assets stolen from North Korean hacking groups have been seized.
  • The seizure is the result of Chainalysis’ investigation of the US$600 million hack on Axie Infinity’s Ronin Network in March. It represents approximately 10% of the total stolen funds.
  • The Chainalysis Crypto Incident Response Team utilized advanced tracing techniques to follow the stolen funds and assist law enforcement and crypto organizations to seize them, according to the report by Chainalysis
  • The stunning rise of crypto thefts from decentralized finance (DeFi) protocols and cross-chain bridges is among the most worrying trends in the crypto space.
  • Elite hacking organizations like the North Korea Lazarus Group are said to be responsible for a major part, as the group stole an estimated US$1 billion worth of cryptocurrency so far in 2022, according to the report.
  • Lazarus Group previously used the now-sanctioned Tornado Cash to move illicit funds. Yet, after the sanctions, Lazarus utilized chain-hopping to launder some of the funds stolen from Ronin, according to Chainalysis Storyline.

See related article: Ronin hackers converted stolen ETH to BTC using sanctioned mixers: report