The Department of State’s Bureau of Cyberspace and Digital Policy (CDP) is strengthening international capacity to counter Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) malware by sponsoring a training series for allies and partners around the world.
CDP sponsored development of the nine-day training program, titled “Unhiding Hidden Cobra,” which it provided to cybersecurity professionals from six partner nations in the Western Hemisphere, Africa, and Asia. (The U.S. government refers to malicious cyber activity by the DPRK government as “Hidden Cobra.”) Courses will continue to be offered to partner nations on a rotational basis through 2022 and 2023. The program includes practical, hands-on exercises to equip participants to prevent, detect, and mitigate malicious cyber activity using cybersecurity information released by U.S. government agencies. Participants are primarily staff from computer security incident response teams and entities with similar roles in the public and private sectors. CDP offers these virtual trainings in partnership with the Software Engineering Institute, a federally funded research and development center based at Carnegie Mellon University.
Building international cybersecurity capacity is a key part of the United States’ commitment to promoting an open, interoperable, secure, and reliable Internet and a stable cyberspace. By cooperating with international partners to disrupt cyber threats, including those from the DPRK, the United States helps to strengthen global adherence to the framework of responsible state behavior in cyberspace and build global cyber resilience. The DPRK’s malicious cyber activities threaten the United States and the broader international community, including the integrity and stability of the global financial system. In recent years, the DPRK has increasingly relied on malicious cyber activities – including stealing directly from banks – to generate revenue for its UN-prohibited weapons of mass destruction and ballistic missile programs.