The picture drawn by HP is of a state bent on using the Internet not to advance its economy but to fund its precarious economy and thereby simply survive. It happily uses cyber-operations for their nuisance value, setting out primarily to destroy and disrupt rather than steal resources. By turning itself into a problem demanding attention it seeks to gain concessions.
Its lack of infrastructure forces it to use resources beyond its borders, something that makes it incredibly vulnerable should governments and policies change but also quite effective in the short run. Sourcing cyber-attacks to North Korea is difficult and is usually done by drawing inferences form target lists that always include South Korea.
"We should not overestimate the regime's advanced cyber capability, yet we should never underestimate the potential impact of North Korea utilizing less advanced, quick-and-dirty tactics like DDoS to cripple their high-tech targets," concludes the report.
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