Let me see
So the moral of the story is the NSA is completely jealous of the tyranny of the population by North Korean government?
The NSA tried to wreck North Korea's nuclear weapons lab using the centrifuge-knackering malware Stuxnet, and ultimately failed, multiple intelligence sources claim. US spies developed Stuxnet with the Israelis to attack and break Iran's nuke-fuel equipment from the mid to late 2000s. The software nasty was tweaked to thwart …
Spook nirvana North Korea, secure and controlled access to everything. It appears to be the model the Australian grubyment is leaning towards. Unfortunately the parasitical public sector rarely seem to see the link between funding for their paranoia and delusions, a successful private sector and the free exchange of ideas. North Korea, no USB keys and nothing to eat. Australia, total mandatory surveillance and coal is the future - yum.
According to the Sony hack reports by the FBI the NSA knew it was NK, because the NSA was on their serves and watched them do it.
OK, and so why didn't they stop the nuke program at that time?
I guess the Gov's media buddies come first and the devastation of a free society isn't quite as important.
Different servers? Of course the nodes attacking Sony had to be online (and so vulnerable to attack themselves, to some extent), but those involved in the nuclear program could be fully airgapped, but with a better gap than Iran's had. Not to mention that FBI/NSA "access" may just have consisted of monitoring their external Internet traffic - so they could see "Norks are probing 100.64.12.34 ... uh-oh, they got in, whose is that?" but not necessarily had any control over in-country systems from that.
My ISP could see if I'm off breaking into Sony - it doesn't mean they can to anything to interfere with my printer, even though it is on the LAN that connects to them.
Meanwhile they keep getting infiltrated with malware by china and getting their military secrets stolen. The latest was at a university no doubt chinese spies. they need to do a better job isolating machines on a LAN to prevent the bloody thing gaining access further up the chain. Or stop using windows for starters.
The Norks 235U efforts are secondary to what they are struggling to accomplish with plutonium. Yes, their first test was a fizzle, but where there are dogs and anti-aircraft guns, there is a way. It is all but a certainty that they have determined what went wrong with their first test. That is what testing is for, after all.
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