|There has been an attempt to hack into a laptop belonging to the special investigation team probing President Park Geun-hye's political scandal. / Screencaptured from YouTube|
By Hong Dam-young
There has been an attempt to hack into a laptop belonging to the special investigation team probing President Park Geun-hye's political scandal.
The attempt, which originated overseas, was blocked before it inflicted any damage or leaked data.
The team led by special prosecutor Park Young-soo suspects the attempt was made by far-right groups to disrupt the probe into the corruption scandal involving Park, government officials and executives of Korea's top conglomerates.
The team recently stepped up its investigation into Samsung Electronics vice chairman Lee Jae-yong on suspicion of bribery. On Monday, the team requested an arrest warrant.
"The attempt was made through one of our prosecutors' email account on Naver, Korea's largest internet portal," said an official from the special prosecutors' team.
"It seems the hacker tried to extract information from the team's intranet by gaining access to the prosecutor's account and installing a malicious code in the laptop."
The team has been maintaining cyber security by using its own intranet and separate messenger program and operating desktops and laptops for different purposes.
Desktops are used for making records of statements and reports on investigations or sharing data within the team. When connecting to the Internet, the prosecutors used security-certified individual laptops or devices.
After the hacking alert, the team sought extra measures to tighten security, including activating anti-wiretap devices from the Supreme Prosecutors' Office or strengthening security walls on each computer.
The team's office building in Daechi-dong, Seoul, has been guarded by security personnel around the elevator on ground level and at the main gate around-the-clock. A fingerprint recognition system keeps the emergency staircases shut.
"The prosecutors were asked not to use intranet and the Internet at the same time, and to be more careful when using individual phones, USB drivers and external data storage devices," the official said.