In light of the proliferation of “state-sponsored hackers” from North Korea, the senior crypto officer at the United States Department of Justice said that this was a “pretty significant issue.”

US Justice Department on the hunt for DeFi hackers and thieves
Image: bloomberg

The US Department of Justice’s (DOJ) crypto tsar is clamping down on Decentralized Finance (DeFi) hackers and exploiters in the midst of a four-year increase in criminal crypto activities.

Eun Young Choi, head of the Justice agency’s National Cryptocurrency Enforcement Team (NCET), indicated in a Financial Times story published on May 15 that the agency is concentrating on thefts and breaches utilizing DeFi, and “particularly chain bridges.”

Choi described it as a “pretty significant issue” for the DOJ, citing the rise of North Korean “state-sponsored hackers” as “key actors in this space.”

According to Cointelegraph, North Korean hackers stole between $630 million and $1 billion in crypto assets in 2022.

Choi, a prosecutor with almost a decade of experience in the agency, was named the NCET’s first director in February 2022 by the DoJ.

At the time, the agency said that the NCET would act as a “focal point” for the DOJ in dealing with cryptocurrencies, cybercrime, money laundering, and forfeiture.

US Justice Department Tweet

While the DOJ said that “mixing and tumbling services” would be a priority for the agency, it made no mention of DeFi platforms at the time.

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