The Ministry of Science, ICT and Future Planning says the government is strengthening its posture to respond to hacking attempts amid growing risks of cyberattacks by North Korea.
The ministry said Friday that the number of cyberattacks launched by the North in the first half of the year surged more than 200 percent from the same period last year. It explained that the frequent attacks are apparently aimed at fueling mistrust and uneasiness among the South Korean people against the government.
By expanding hacking organizations, the North took part in various types of cyberattacks, including hacking into thousands of smartphones and information protection firms as well as distributing fake e-mails after seizing accounts of key government officials.
The ministry said that the North sought to steal materials on defense industries by hacking into some 130-thousand personal computers of large companies and engaged in illegal activities abroad, including hacking into banks and running gambling Web sites.
The ministry said it is mulling a pangovernmental response to counter cyberattacks that are coupled with physical terror attacks. It urged the general public to install vaccines in their computers to counter any hacking attempts and to avoid opening suspicious e-mails.