UN panel says N.Korea earns half of foreign currency through cyberactivities

A United Nations panel of experts says North Korea carries out "malicious" cyberactivities to earn about half of its foreign currency revenue.

The panel under the Security Council sanctions committee made the allegation in its annual report released on Wednesday. It cited information from a UN member state.

The panel says another UN member state reported that North Korea bankrolls 40 percent of its weapons of mass destruction programs using "illicit cybermeans." The UN monitors call on member states to take preventive measures.

The report stresses that Pyongyang continues to evade sanctions and acquire foreign currency through a range of methods, particularly cyberattacks on the virtual asset industry.

The panel says it is investigating allegations that North Korea stole roughly 3 billion dollars between 2017 and 2023 through cyberattacks on crypto-related firms.

The report says the panel is looking into North Korea's alleged arms supply to Russia. Such transfers would violate UN Security Council resolutions.

The panel says it is also probing a report that the Islamic group Hamas is using North Korean weapons in its ongoing fight against Israel.