How a Colombian hacker took down North Korea’s internet

Two years ago, Alejandro Caceres, also known as P4x, launched a solo cyberattack on North Korea’s internet infrastructure in retaliation for being targeted by North Korean spies. Despite no government support, his attack garnered attention and interest from US agencies. However, his proposal for a more aggressive US cyber strategy was met with bureaucratic resistance.

Caceres, along with a Pentagon contractor, advocated for a “special forces” approach to hacking, emphasizing nimble, targeted attacks. Despite positive initial responses, bureaucratic hurdles prevented their project from gaining traction. Caceres believes the US should adopt a more proactive stance in cyberspace, targeting not just military or criminal entities but also civilian infrastructure of adversary nations.

Critics caution against indiscriminate cyberattacks, citing potential legal and ethical implications. While acknowledging the need for caution, Caceres argues that inaction only emboldens adversaries, pointing to escalating cyber threats like ransomware attacks.

Although his proposal was not embraced by the government, Caceres remains committed to his vision of more assertive cyber operations. He hopes to restart the conversation and continues to advocate for a more aggressive US cyber strategy, with or without official support.

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