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Seoul says N. Korea 'likely' behind June 25 cyber attack

SEOUL, July 16 (Yonhap) -- The government on Tuesday named North Korea as a suspect in the latest cyber attack against the presidential office website and dozens of other government offices and news outlets here.

The latest attack took place from June 25, the anniversary of the outbreak of the 1950-53 Korean War, to July 1, in which the websites of 69 government and private organizations, including the prime minister's office, were attacked.

About 90 percent of the attacked websites and servers have been repaired, according to the Ministry of Science, ICT and Future Planning.

The ministry said the hackers in the latest attack used at least one IP address that had been used in previous attacks by North Korean hackers.

The hackers in the latest attack had used the identity of a hacktivist group, Anonymous, which in the past had launched a series of attacks against the websites of pro-North Korea organizations.

"The cyber attack seriously undermined the country's image by alternating the websites of symbolic government organizations, such as the presidential office Cheong Wa Dae, and caused confusion in identifying the attackers by assuming the identity of the hacktivist group Anonymous," the ministry said in a press release.

The ministry said the methods, pattern and other characteristics of attacks used in the latest incident were also the same as those identified in previous attacks by the communist North.

"In addition, the malware used in the latest attack against websites and in distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks has been confirmed to be a variation of the malware found in the March 20 cyber attack (by North Korea)," it added.

bdk@yna.co.kr

(END)

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