US State Department Offers $5M Reward for North Korean IT Job Scheme

US State Department Offers $5M Reward for North Korean IT Job Scheme

Nadia Kim
2 min read

US Offers Rewards for Information on North Korean IT Workers Infiltrating American Companies

The US State Department is offering rewards of up to $5 million for information leading to the identification of a group of North Koreans who have been gaining remote IT jobs at American companies using stolen identities. Federal prosecutors have charged an Arizona woman, Christina Chapman, for allegedly helping the North Koreans find these jobs from October 2020 to October 2023. The North Koreans, who go by Jiho Han, Chunji Jin, Haoran Xu, and Zhonghua, allegedly attempted to gain employment at two US government agencies and have ties with North Korea's Munitions Industry Department. The scheme has generated at least $6.8 million for North Korea, which is facing strict sanctions from the US and Western governments over its nuclear weapons testing. Anyone with information on the individuals or entities involved is encouraged to submit it via Signal, Telegram, WhatsApp, or the Tor Browser.

Key Takeaways

  • The US offers rewards of up to $5 million for info on North Korean IT workers infiltrating American companies.
  • Christina Chapman, 49, charged for helping North Koreans find remote software/application developer jobs.
  • Group, using stolen identities, gained remote jobs at US companies and attempted to infiltrate government agencies.
  • Scheme generated at least $6.8 million for North Korea, facing strict sanctions over nuclear weapons testing.
  • Chapman faces 97.5 years in prison if convicted; anyone with info encouraged to submit tips anonymously.


The US State Department's $5 million reward offer for information on North Korean IT workers highlights the growing concern over state-sponsored cyber threats. The scheme, orchestrated by an Arizona woman, Christina Chapman, allegedly generated over $6.8 million for North Korea, bypassing strict sanctions. This incident emphasizes the urgent need for enhanced security measures and identity verification in remote employment. Organizations, particularly government agencies, must strengthen their defenses against such sophisticated attacks. If left unchecked, these activities could lead to more audacious attacks on critical infrastructure and strategic information systems. Consequently, this situation might intensify diplomatic tensions between the US and North Korea while driving advances in cybersecurity technologies.

Did You Know?

  • Remote IT jobs: In the context of this article, remote IT jobs refer to technology-related positions that do not require the employee to be physically present in an office.
  • Stolen identities: The North Korean individuals involved in this scheme allegedly used stolen identities to gain remote IT jobs at American companies.
  • Sanctions: Sanctions are punitive measures imposed by governments or international organizations to restrict economic activity or trade with a particular country or entity.

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