Press release

Foreign Office Minister condemns North Korean actor for WannaCry attacks

Lord Ahmad has said that the United Kingdom will identify, pursue and respond to malicious cyber activity.

The Foreign Office Minister Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon has attributed the WannaCry ransomware incident to North Korean actors the Lazarus Group. The decision to publicly attribute this incident sends a clear message that the UK and its allies will not tolerate malicious cyber activity.

The WannaCry ransomware incident impacted 300,000 computers in 150 countries including 48 NHS trusts.

Foreign Office Minister for Cyber, Lord Ahmad said:

The UK’s National Cyber Security Centre assesses it is highly likely that North Korean actors known as the Lazarus Group were behind the WannaCry ransomware campaign – one of the most significant to hit the UK in terms of scale and disruption.

We condemn these actions and commit ourselves to working with all responsible states to combat destructive criminal use of cyber space. The indiscriminate use of the WannaCry ransomware demonstrates North Korean actors using their cyber programme to circumvent sanctions.

International law applies online as it does offline. The United Kingdom is determined to identify, pursue and respond to malicious cyber activity regardless of where it originates, imposing costs on those who wish to attack us in cyberspace. We are committed to strengthening coordinated international efforts to uphold a free, open, peaceful and secure cyberspace.

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Published 19 December 2017