News of the hack is likely to further fuel tensions between the U.S. and North Korea, as leaders of the two countries have been exchanging insults over Pyongyang's recent missile tests. Such flights by the powerful aircraft based in Guam incense the North, which claims they are preparation for war; Pyongyang has threatened to send missiles into the waters around Guam.
And in April, North Korea was linked to attacks on banks in 18 countries after researchers connected hackers to an operation known as "Lazarus", according to a report from Russian cybersecurity firm Kaspersky. The South has taken an increasingly aggressive stance toward the North's belligerence amid back-and-forth threats of war between North Korea and President Donald Trump.
The briefing by his defence secretary James Mattis and top military officer General Joseph Dunford "focused on a range of options to respond to any form of North Korean aggression or, if necessary, to prevent North Korea from threatening the United States and its allies with nuclear weapons", according to a brief statement from the White House.
The air-to-ground missile maneuvers near the South Korean coast were intentionally scheduled for North Korea's communist party's anniversary.
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The documents reportedly include contingency plans for war, drawn up by the US and South Korea, along with details on power plants and military facilities.
"Ladies and gentlemen, it is right now a diplomatically-led, economically sanction-buttressed effort to try to turn North Korea off this path", he said.
The training was part of a programme of "extended deterrence" against North Korea, it added.
Late last month the USA flew B-1Bs over worldwide waters close to North Korea's east coast.
The U.S. flew the two B-1B Lancer bombers over the peninsula along with South Korean F-15k fighter planes and additional fighters from Japan, which the U.S. military said was the first such nighttime maneuver conducted by the three countries together.
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Two supersonic U.S. bombers have flown over the Korean peninsula in a "show of force" despite Kim Jong-Un's threats to shoot them down.
"There is an urgent need for the military to change and update parts that were stolen by North Korea", Lee said.
North Korean dictator Kim Jong-Un inspects a military site in North Korea in this undated picture released by state media. But Kim, the third generation of his family to rule, is officially revered in the North, and any suggestion of removing him from power is taken extremely seriously in Pyongyang.
The data, said to be 235 gigabytes of military documents, was stolen from the Defense Integrated Data Center in September 2016.
The U.S. has been pursuing a strategy of "maximum pressure" on North Korea, applying diplomatic and economic pressure multilaterally and unilaterally.
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