In a hearing on April 19, General Vincent Brooks told the Congressional Committee that North Korea is evolving in terms of cyber warfare. Although North Korea is bogged down with aging Soviet jets and tanks in terms of its ground game, it appears to be making strides on the Internet.
"This is an area of growth," Brooks said in his hearing.
At the time, Brooks was speaking to the Senate Armed Services Committee as he looked to take over all forces in South Korea. He was eventually given that position late in April.
Recently, North Korea Leader Kim Jong-un has made headlines for nuclear tests, despite the number of sanctions against his country. On April 23, the country fired a ballistic missile into nearby waters. Although it exploded just 30 kilometers after launch, it has caused concern around the world.
The North East Asia Research Foundation hosted the Korea-China-Japan Seoul Process between April 22 and 24 to tackle the issues surrounding North Korea. In the discussion, it was Noboru Yamaguchi of the National Defense Academy of Japan who honed in on North Korea's potential cyberattacks.
"We cannot say that the current tensions on the peninsula will lead to war, but we need to pay attention to the fact that the scale of such tensions is getting larger," said Yamaguchi, according to a transcript from the meeting. "It can become increasingly difficult to determine the culprits behind the North's provocations as they take the form of cyber and terror attacks."
Recently, South Korea reported on May 1 that North Korea allegedly jammed GPS signals and other electronic navigation aids. As a result, fishing vessel operations were disrupted in South Korea. The country has blamed North Korea for similar attacks in the past, but North Korea has denied any involvement.
As for nuclear attacks, Kim Jong-un reportedly made a statement on May 7, claiming that his country would not launch any nuclear weapons unless North Korea's "sovereignty is encroached upon by aggressive, hostile forces." However, there is no telling what Jong-un defines as "hostile" or "aggressive," as the country continues to test its weapons.