Published: Thu, October 12, 2017
Global Media | By Garry Long

North Korean hackers allegedly probing United States utilities for weaknesses

North Korean hackers allegedly probing United States utilities for weaknesses

Trump, meeting with members of his national security team, discussed "a range of options to respond to any form of North Korean aggression or, if necessary, to prevent North Korea from threatening the United States and its allies with nuclear weapons", according to a statement from White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders.

North Korea did not conduct any launches or tests on Tuesday's anniversary.

Separately, the Navy said a US submarine that is capable of firing Tomahawk cruise missiles and torpedoes made a port call Saturday at the USA base in the South Korean city of Chinhae.

The exercises came hours after a South Korean lawmaker claimed North Korean hackers had stolen a large cache of military documents from his country, "including a plan to assassinate North Korea's leader Kim Jong Un, and wartime contingency plans drawn up by the US and South Korea", reports the BBC. "What I am going to tell you is that the [South Korea]-US alliance, that bilateral entity, is there to deal with those types of situation and safeguard against them".

The two B-1B bombers were accompanied by two F-15K fighters from the South Korean military after leaving their base in Guam, the South's Joint Chiefs of Staff said in a news release on Wednesday.

The warplanes first conducted a simulated air-to-ground missile drill over the waters east of the Korean Peninsula and then flew over South Korea and conducted the same drill over the waters west of the peninsula, the South Korean military said.

EPA to kill Obama-era clean power plan
In the 43-page document, the EPA said the Clean Power Plan (CPP) introduced by former President Barack Obama in 2015 was illegal. The utilities are the largest emitters of greenhouse gases blamed by scientists for climate change.

A spokesman for North Korea's foreign ministry said last month that the more sanctions the USA and its allies impose on North Korea, the faster the nation will work to develop its nuclear weapons programme, according to North Korea's official KCNA news agency.

Reports of reconnaissance on USA utilities follow earlier reports alleging DPRK spies stole a large cache of military documents from South Korea, including a plan to assassinate North Korea's leader, Kim Jong-un.

President Trump hosted a discussion on options to respond to any North Korean aggression, or, if necessary, to prevent Pyongyang from threatening the USA and its allies with nuclear weapons, the White House said in a statement.

The South's Yonhap news agency quoted Lee as saying that 235 gigabytes of military documents were taken.

Commenting on the news is Chris Doman, security researcher at AlienVault, who is investigating hacking groups in North Korea. While early 80 percent of the documents had not yet been identified, they reportedly included contingency plans for South Korean special forces and information on military facilities and power plants, it said.

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