Hackers from North Korea are causing trouble again, and this time they targeted Atomic Wallet. They managed to steal a whopping $35 million in crypto.

The experts at Elliptic, who know their way around blockchain, have connected the dots and linked the theft to the Lazarus group. They’ve been busy tracking the stolen funds as they were moved around different wallets and mixers, in attempts to cover the tracks.

This attack on Atomic Wallet happened just last weekend, and it left a lot of innocent wallets compromised and their funds snatched away. The total haul reached over $35 million. According to Elliptic, this is the first big crypto heist of the year for Lazarus. Don’t forget, they’ve already blown through $100 million from the Harmony Horizon Bridge hack in June 2022, and a mind-boggling $620 million from Axie Infinity in March 2022. Who knows what they’re spending it on? Maybe North Korean rockets or their nuclear program?

You might be wondering how Elliptic can be so confident in their attribution. Well, it turns out that the laundering strategy used in this attack was the same as in their previous heists. They also used the Sinbad mixer again, and a good chunk of the stolen funds ended up in the same wallets that were linked to Lazarus before.

Even though laundering stolen cryptocurrency has become trickier lately, there are still some less scrupulous exchanges out there where these things can happen. That’s why wallet developers and operators need to step up their cybersecurity efforts and seriously audit and test their code. Unless they want to unknowingly contribute to funding some dictator’s science projects, right?

But here’s the big question that keeps bugging some experts: Who the heck is behind the Lazarus group? The world is a curious place, so maybe there are some folks pretending to be North Koreans, flaunting their top-notch computer skills. Who knows, right?