Choson Sinbo, the newspaper of the DPRK-affiliated Korean community in Japan, has apologized to its readers after its user database was leaked over the weekend by hackers.
The Tokyo-based newspaper ran an apology on its website in both Korean and Japanese in which it acknowledged the Saturday attack resulted in the disclosure of private information about registered users of the web site.
The database, seen by NorthKoreaTech.org, contained the usernames and email addresses of 3,667 registered users. The vast majority of the users appear to be based in Japan and the email addresses leaked include those of companies, universities, personal addresses and cell phones.
In reaction to the attack, the newspaper has opened up access to its site and does not currently require a user name or password to access any content. The membership didn’t require any payment, so bank account or credit card details were not held by the site.
The attack was one of three that hit North Korea-related sites over the weekend. One resulted in the publishing of details on just over 1,300 users of the Korea American National Coordinating Council (?????????) website and the other details of a handful of users of the China-based Ryomyong (??) site.
The attacks were carried out by hackers who claimed affiliation with the loosely organized “Anonymous” hacker group. Members of the group have been waging a weeks-long battle against North Korean websites that was sparked by a threat to attack American military bases in the region.