DOJ Trial Attorney David Aaron, EMCS ’18, Member of Team Charging North Korean Programmer for Sony Hack, WannaCry

David Aaron, Brown University Executive Master in Cybersecurity (EMCS) Class of 2018 and a United States Department of Justice (DOJ) federal prosecutor, was part of a law enforcement team that unsealed charges against a North Korean regime-backed programmer, Park Jin Hyok, for conspiracy to conduct multiple cyber attacks and intrusions including the global WannaCry 2.0 ransomware attack, The Interview retaliatory cyber attack on Sony Pictures, and the $81 million central bank cybertheft in Bangladesh.

The complaint alleges that Park was a member of a government-sponsored hacking team known to the private sector as the “Lazarus Group,” and worked for a North Korean government front company, Chosun Expo Joint Venture (a/k/a Korea Expo Joint Venture or “KEJV”), to support the national government’s malicious cyber actions.

The charges were announced by Attorney General Jeff Sessions, FBI Director Christopher A. Wray, Assistant Attorney General for National Security John C. Demers, First Assistant United States Attorney for the Central District of California Tracy Wilkison and Assistant Director in Charge Paul D. Delacourt of the FBI’s Los Angeles Field Office.

In addition to these criminal charges, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin announced today that the Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) designated Park and KEJV under Executive Order 13722 based on the malicious cyber and cyber-enabled activity outlined in the criminal complaint.

Regarding this achievement, EMCS Program Director Professor Alan Usas shared,

It is no surprise to any of us at EMCS who worked with Aaron that he is playing such a high profile role in this monumental DOJ case. In addition to winning the 2018 Brown University Graduate School Master’s Award for Professional Excellence, Aaron was an outstanding colleague who impacted the work of faculty and his fellow students.

For more information about David Aaron:

To read the rest of the DOJ release, go here.

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