Cybersecurity News that Matters

Cybersecurity News that Matters

Spy agency urges deletion of auth app, citing North Korean hackers

by Sangbae HAN

Jun. 28, 2023
9:45 AM GMT+9

By Dain Oh, The Readable
Jun. 28, 2023 6:45PM GMT+9

The South Korean intelligence agency warned the public of North Korean cyberattacks on Wednesday, especially guiding them to delete the authentication software “MagicLine4NX” from any devices in use.

According to the National Intelligence Service, around 50 organizations have already been infected by malicious codes which were devised by the Reconnaissance General Bureau in North Korea. Public institutions, media, and defense organizations were included among the victims.

Popularly used for authentication purposes in South Korea, MagicLine4NX is automatically activated on users’ devices once it is installed for the first time. If users do not update or delete the software, it carries on containing its initial vulnerabilities throughout its operation, stressed the spy agency in its press release.

The North Korean hackers have been exploiting the software program’s vulnerabilities for cyberespionage since the end of last year, according to the joint investigation between the South Korean government agencies. The investigators are currently looking into the details of the damage, such as data leaks from infected devices.

“We released a security patch last March, but the updating progress has been slow,” disclosed Dream Security, the developing firm of MagicLine4NX. “It is crucial to delete or update MagicLine4NX whether it is installed on computers at the workplace or at home.”

“Since the software is installed onto most computers in the nation, preventive measures by citizens are most important,” said the NIS. The agency is collaborating with the National Cyber Risk Management Unit (NCRMU) to minimize the damages which might follow.

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The cover image of this article was designed by Sangseon Kim.

Dain Oh is a distinguished journalist based in South Korea, recognized for her exceptional contributions to the field. As the founder and editor-in-chief of The Readable, she has demonstrated her expertise in leading media outlets to success. Prior to establishing The Readable, Dain was a journalist for The Electronic Times, a prestigious IT newspaper in Korea. During her tenure, she extensively covered the cybersecurity industry, delivering groundbreaking reports. Her work included exclusive stories, such as the revelation of incident response information sharing by the National Intelligence Service. These accomplishments led to her receiving the Journalist of the Year Award in 2021 by the Korea Institute of Information Security and Cryptology, a well-deserved accolade bestowed upon her through a unanimous decision. Dain has been invited to speak at several global conferences, including the APEC Women in STEM Principles and Actions, which was funded by the U.S. State Department. Additionally, she is an active member of the Asian American Journalists Association, further exhibiting her commitment to journalism.


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