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Tags: hacking | economy | sanctions | intellectual property | theft

Report: NKorea Could Start Stealing Intellectual Property

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(J.W. Alker/AP)

By    |   Thursday, 21 February 2019 09:43 PM EST

North Korea reportedly could turn to stealing business secrets to crank up their economy, according to Axios.

Citing a theory from cybersecurity firm CrowdStrike, Axios reported North Korea is one of the "big four" hacking threats — along with China, Russia, and Iran — but it currently focuses on cash.

According to Axios, North Korea's long-held strategy had emphasized parallel development of nuclear and economic power. Since they have announced they achieved the first goal, that leaves the economic goal as a focus.

"North Korea will want to leapfrog its way into the global economy," Adam Meyers, vice president of intelligence at CrowdStrike, told Axios. "Vietnam is frequently mentioned as the model North Korea would follow to build a sustainable economy. But China would be on the table, too."

While CrowdStrike does not see any current intellectual property theft, Meyers suggested a shift could happen in the next two years, Axios reported.

Jenny Town, an analyst for the Stimson Center and managing editor of its North Korea-focused 38 North blog, told Axios the shift CrowdStrike is predicting is something to watch out for.

"It has been dangerous in the past to underestimate North Korea on these things," she said.

Still, Axios noted, North Korea lacks the infrastructure for the kinds of high-tech manufacturing that China succeeded with — and does not have the equipment to mass-produce cheap, modern products.

"They're making a fair amount of money through hard currency, and they'd have to reassign those resources to do this," Adam Segal, director of the digital and cyberspace policy program at the Council on Foreign Relations, told Axios.

But Robert Manning, an Atlantic Council resident senior fellow, told Axios any intellectual property theft would probably favor goods that are easy to fabricate — like pharmaceuticals and pirated movies.

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To crank up their economy, North Korea reportedly could turn to stealing business secrets, Axios reported.
hacking, economy, sanctions, intellectual property, theft
Thursday, 21 February 2019 09:43 PM
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