North Korea is set to host an international blockchain and cryptocurrency conference in April 2019, reports Independent UK, November 20, 2018. The conference will also see its attendees revel a seven-day tour of the country.
Pyongyang to Host the Tech Conference
Due to the difficult political climate in the country, North Korea has created a controversial image for itself in world politics.
Hit by international sanctions, the DPRK (Democratic People’s Republic of Korea) sees the benefits of utilizing the decentralized characteristic of blockchain technology to circumvent the global economic iron curtains. This is also evident by a recent report, in which international experts opined that Pyongyang is using cryptocurrencies to evade sanctions imposed by the U.S.
The DLT and digital currencies focused conference will be held at the national capital city of Pyongyang. Additionally, for a sum of $3800, conference delegates can enjoy an all-inclusive stay in the reclusive country. The stay includes recreational activities like skating, shooting, shopping, and a trip to a beer factory.
A website promoting the state-sponsored event states:
“International experts in the blockchain and crypto industry will gather for the first time in Pyongyang to share their knowledge and vision, establish connections and discuss business opportunities.“
Unsurprisingly, the event is not open to citizens of Japan, South Korea, and Israel. However, attendees from the United States are welcome to attend, despite a travel ban. The event can also not be attended by journalists, agents of mass media or “any mass propaganda or printed/digital material that is against the dignity of the Republic.”
With regard to the safety of the personnel attending the conference, the website states:
“As long as you have a basic common-sense and respect for the culture and belief of other nations, you’ll be always welcome and enjoy like thousands of friends we’ve been hosting for the past 28 years and engaged in cultural, sports, science or business relations.“
North Korean Hack Attacks on a Surge
While hosting a conference focused on emerging tech is a step in the right direction, North Korea has a rather notorious rapport in the cryptosphere. The infamy can largely be attributed to the Korean hacker group which operates under the name “Lazarus.”
BTCManager reported on August 27, 2018, how a malware by the hacker group attacked MacOS machines for unethical financial objectives. It becomes worse, as allegedly, the group is backed by the North Korean government.
Moreover, according to a report published October 22, 2018, the cyber wrongdoers were responsible for stealing close to $571 million worth of cryptocurrencies from leading crypto exchanges the world over.