North Korea: The Intelligence Black Hole
Most of you might know that North Korea is “World’s Intelligence Black Hole”. The reason behind this is North Korea lacks of modern communications and it makes hard for the CIA to get information. At the same time, surprising Pyongyang is sophisticated enough to wage cyber warfare. We should not forget the fact that 40% of Hacker Attacks are from US and China.
If you are interested checkout, 5 CIA Terminal Wallpaper Collection
Like India’s BOSS operating system the Korea Computer Center, North Korea has developed its own Linux based operating system called “Red Star OS”. Also read, 15 Most Interesting Linux Facts
Reason Behind the Name “Red Star OS”
The reason behind naming the operating system as “Red Star OS” is due to North Korea’s flag. Yes, North Korea’s flag is with Red Star symbol so Kim Jong-un named the operating system as Red Star.
What’s So Special about this Red Star OS?
- Red Star operating system is based on a Linux 2009 version called Fedora 11 limits its users to a government-approved view of the world and has the tendency to ‘watermark’ files on USB sticks to track user’s shuttling contraband material.
- This operating system not only prevents potential foreign hacking attacks but also provides extensive surveillance capabilities.
- It’s appearance is similar to Apple’s MAC OS X.
- Tracks User’s Every Move: Whenever a user inserts a USB storage device containing photos, videos or other documents, into a computer running Red Star, the OS takes the current hard disk’s serial number, encrypts that number, and writes that encrypted serial into the file, marking it.The purpose of watermarking files is to track who actually has the particular file, who created that file, and who opened it.
- So, in short the North Korea government tracks every user activity and keeps a log of it.
- Red Star OS uses KDE 3 and is available only in Korean, and is localised to North Korean spellings and terms.
- The OS also has its own set of algorithms and way of encrypting files. These encrypted files are hard to decrypt by external hackers. Want to encrypt your emails? KeyScrambler Personal Software:Encrypts Keystokes As You Type
- Surprising fact is that the Red Star OS is “designed to defend and protect itself from changes made from user space,” and that the features implemented in Red Star OS are “the wet dream of a surveillance state dictator.” For example, if a user does make a change to the OS, like disabling firewall, the computer will display an error or even just reboot itself, according to a separate report in The Guardian.
- Security Magazines suggested that North Korea is not only surveilling its citizens, but is also paranoid that other countries could install back doors to prevent snooping from other countries.
Naenara – North Korea Web Browser:
- Red Star operating system contains a Firefox-based browser called Naenara for browsing the country’s intranet, along with an email client, media players, a music composition program, games, and a text editor.
- The word Naenara means “My country” in Korean. Naenara comes with two search engines. Likewise, Indian Software Engineers has developed Epic Browser – Web browser for Indians.
- Also, read How to Set Custom Background Image for Epic Browser?
Every country has it’s right to defend itself. Likewise, the North Korea under the leadership of Kim Jong-un developing it’s own way to protect it’s country from any Cyber attacks, especially from USA.
Did You Know?
- Red Star 3.0 was first leaked in 2014.
- Cuba has its own operating system called “Nova”
- Canaima (operating system), a national operating system for Venezuela
- Kylin (operating system), targeted at the Chinese market
- BOSS Linux, endorsed by the Government of India.
If you know coding you can download Open source files and develop your own Operating system.