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US Failed to Attack Weapons of North Korea with a Stuxnet-type Virus

Reuters.com reported on 29th May, 2015 stating that United States tried to install a version of Stuxnet computer virus to attack nuclear weapons program of North Korea five years ago but finally failed to do so, according to people who are aware of details of this secret campaign which have appeared now.

The operation started in tandem with current-famous Stuxnet virus attack which disrupted nuclear program of Iran in 2009 and 2010 by destroying a thousand or more centrifuges which were elevating uranium. The existence of Stuxnet was first discovered in June 2010 and then later confirmed by whistleblower Edward Snowden of NSA (National Security Agency) who alleged that the U.S. and Israel were behind the attacks although none of the government acknowledges responsibility.

Reuters.com reported on 29th May, 2015 stating that according to one intelligence source of U.S., developers of Stuxnet produced a related virus which would be activated when it faced Korean-language settings on an infected machine.

Reuters.com published a report on 29th May, 2015 quoting a former high-ranking intelligence official who was briefed about the program, as saying: "But U.S. agents could not access the main machines which ran program for nuclear weapons in Pyongyang (capital of North Korea).

Being one of the most narrow-minded countries in the world and its absolute secrecy along with its extreme inaccessibility to communication system, North Korea foiled the campaign led by NSA.

Interestingly, one needs to have permission from the police to own a computer and the open Internet is not known to public except some few elite. Moreover, the country has one main channel for Internet connections through China with outside world.

Beside Iran, North Korea is now the only other country to have been targeted unpleasantly by cyber espionage campaign by U.S. in trying to destroy equipment although several campaigns have been carried out secretly. As several Iranians surfed Internet and had interactions with companies across the world, NSA could compromise their systems much easier.

Sputniknews.com published news on 30th May, 2015 quoting David Albright, Founder of the Institute for Science and International Security and an authority on nuclear program of North Korea, as saying "US hackers possibly tried to attack North Korea by compromising technology suppliers from Pakistan, China and Iran."

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