US Sanctions Cryptocurrency Mixer Sinbad for Aiding North Korean Hackers

US Sanctions Cryptocurrency Mixer Sinbad for Aiding North Korean Hackers

November 30, 2023 at 07:54AM

The US Treasury imposed sanctions on Sinbad, a cryptocurrency mixer used by the North Korean hacker group Lazarus to launder millions in stolen funds, including significant portions from recent heists. Sinbad masks transactions and is linked to diverse illegal activities, continuing a pattern of financial crimes by Lazarus to fund DPRK’s unlawful programs.

Meeting Takeaways:

1. The US Department of the Treasury has imposed sanctions on the cryptocurrency mixer Sinbad for its involvement in laundering stolen cryptocurrency for the North Korean state-sponsored hacking group Lazarus.

2. Sinbad is identified as Lazarus’ preferred cryptocurrency mixing service and has been involved in laundering millions of dollars in stolen cryptocurrency for the threat actor.

3. Sinbad operates on the Bitcoin blockchain and is considered to be a successor to the previously sanctioned mixer. It is used to obscure the details of illicit transactions, including their origin, destination, and parties involved.

4. Apart from aiding Lazarus, Sinbad is also implicated in concealing transactions associated with other illegal activities, such as sanctions evasion, drug trafficking, and unauthorized sales on dark web marketplaces.

5. The US attributes Sinbad’s involvement in the laundering of a substantial portion of funds from various high-profile cryptocurrency heists, including $100 million from Atomic Wallet in June 2023, $620 million from Axie Infinity in March 2022, and $100 million from Horizon Bridge in June 2022.

6. Lazarus Group’s activities over the past decade have reportedly resulted in the theft of over $2 billion in digital assets. These cyber heists are a response to strong US and United Nations sanctions, aiming to fund North Korea’s illegal weapons and missile programs.

7. In the current year, Lazarus is believed to have stolen in excess of $377 million in cryptocurrencies through attacks targeting several platforms, including Atomic Wallet, Alphapo, CoinEx, CoinsPaid, and

8. The US had previously sanctioned another mixing service, Tornado Cash, for similar involvement with the Lazarus Group.

Additional Notes:
– Related information includes US sanctions on a Russian national for aiding ransomware groups with money laundering, additional sanctions on members of the Russian Trickbot cybercrime group, sanctions on a North Korean university for hacker training, and UN expert claims of record virtual asset theft by North Korean hackers.

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