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A military parade marking the 70th anniversary of the foundation of North Korea, Sept. 9, 2018. Photo: Alexander Demianchuk\TASS via Getty Images

U.S. Cyber Command released samples of North Korea's government-funded malware to researchers during the early hours of North Korea's Day of the Foundation of the Republic — a move seemingly timed to unnerve the hermit nation during a national holiday.

The big picture: Cyber Command periodically releases malware to the research community to bolster private sector defenses against foreign threats. But while previous releases received praise from the researchers for providing new details about threat groups, the North Korean samples that were atypically released on a Sunday don't immediately appear to be as fruitful.

What they're saying: "It's old [samples]," tweeted Sergio Caltagirone, VP of threat intelligence for Dragos.

  • The link between the Sunday release date and the North Korean holiday was first noticed by Andrew Thompson of Mandiant.

Cyber Command released the samples between midnight and 1am, North Korea time, on Sept. 9.

  • The release contains samples of malware from the hacker group Hidden Cobra, which the U.S. government has attributed to North Korea.
  • Cyber Command would not say if the timing of the release was intentional. "We do not discuss details about the malware samples the CNMF team posts," a spokesperson told Axios.

Go deeper

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Experts predict major boom for North American sports stadiums

Rendering of the $375 million Moody Center on the UT-Austin campus. Photo courtesy of Moody Center

Stadium and arena construction in North America will total a relatively tame $5.8 billion this year, a 12% decrease from 2021.

The big picture: What the industry lacks in construction it expects to make up for in design, with experts predicting a sports venue boom over the next half-decade, SBJ reports.

Updated 1 hour ago - World

UK government: Kremlin has plan "to install pro-Russian leadership" in Ukraine

British Foreign Secretary Elizabeth Truss. Photo: Gints Ivuskans / AFP via Getty Images

The United Kingdom's Foreign Secretary on Saturday night said the government has "information that indicates the Russian Government is looking to install a pro-Russian leader in Kyiv as it considers whether to invade and occupy Ukraine."

The latest: “I can’t comment on specific pieces of intelligence. But we’ve been warning about just this kind of tactic for weeks and we’ve spoken to that publicly," Secretary of State Antony Blinken said Sunday. The Biden administration has said Russia is actively manufacturing a pretext for invasion and warned that Putin could use joint military exercises in Belarus as cover to invade from the north.

Updated 2 hours ago - Economy & Business

Student debt getting in the way of millennial homeownership

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Millennial homeownership is on the rise — but student loan debt is still keeping millions of members of America's largest generation from owning a home.

Why it matters: Buying a house remains the No. 1 way to build wealth in the U.S.