In the communist regime of North Korea, every single detail is controlled in order to maintain a revolutionary structure where people live in the scariest Orwellian nightmare. This way, TV and radio stations only reproduce the songs and messages that dictator Kim Jong Un wants to be sent. Lamentably, this situation hasn’t changed for decades. However, this reality recently got an unexpected twist after the famous hacker known as “The Jester” cracked into one of the radio stations and played The Final Countdown on repeat.
Logically, it was an unpleasant time for North Korean officials, who felt threatened by knowing that some of the citizens could be hearing a Western 80s hit. After all, there’s nothing worse for a communist regime that any single product or piece of work that comes from the West. Given this situation, if these officials knew that this song was actually a one-hit wonder, they would probably have a brain seizure.
Far from not wanting to show the unspeakable mayhem that the communist regime experienced, the hacker posted the news of the incident on Twitter. Naturally, everyone in their position would have done exactly the same thing.
If you don’t know any of his previous “works,” let’s say this hacker managed to hack into numerous jihadist websites. In addition, this individual even defaced the official website of the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs with a message that called the Kremlin to “stop attacking Americans.”
Just last week, North Koreans living along the northern border were treated to a whole different sort of broadcast. In addition to different kinds of songs –none of these in English- people in this country only hear state propaganda.
Apparently, the radio station that was hacked broadcasts from Kanggye at 6400kHz station, which is close to the northern border with China and about 185 miles from Pyongyang. Different sources assured that this tower is used by the Pyongyang Broadcasting Station, also known as the Pyongyang BS. While some details about the hack have been revealed, it remains unclear the exact broadcast range, considering that this station also broadcasts on 621, 1053, and 3250 frequencies.
While this was a clever and funny operation against the communist regime, the truth is that the Jester’s choice of this particular radio station was not accidental. According to Washington-based intelligence firm Strategic Sentinel, this station is frequently used to broadcast alerts before different kinds of emergencies and weapons tests. Of course, it includes nuclear weapon tests, which are preceded most of the time by “coded messages.”
This way, what the Jester did was quite spectacular considering the consequences that this had to the communist regime. It was a clear message that showed how they could easily get hacked, despite the fact they have some of the most dangerous hackers in the world.
According to the firm, Radio Pyongyang has broadcasted coded messages on 6400 kHz. Also, Strategic Sentinel stated that almost every single time they do this, it signals an upcoming provocation.
While it remains unknown what’s next on the world destruction provocation schedule, the firm recently noticed a pattern. Apparently, coded alerts typically happen one day before Japanese flyovers, two days before a nuclear test, and one day before an intercontinental ballistic missile test.
Basically, the Jester’s operation injected a strong dose of humor into an otherwise serious alert schedule. Without any kind of doubt, this bold act could embolden other hackers to have some fun with the communist regime.
While it remains unclear how long the hack lasted, it is quite possible that North Korean authorities plugged the exploit within 24 hours. Naturally, it wasn’t before regular North Koreans got a pretty cheesy taste of the Western culture.
The computer hijacker "Jester" hacked North Korea's radio station and played "The Final Countdown"!? #Merica
— Benton Blount (@bentonblount) November 12, 2017
The song was first released by the Swedish rock band Europe back in 1986. During its epic 31-year lifespan, The Final Countdown has gone from smash hit to some kind of nostalgia classic. In fact, the song has secured some weird spots in TV shows, cheesy commercials and Hollywood films over the last decades.
In Arrested Development, this song complements GOB’s extraordinary magic shows. More recently, Geico featured the Swedish rock band playing the track in a staid work cafeteria. Also, it’s a staple at many sporting events, especially when the clock is running out.
On Spotify, The Final Countdown has nearly 90 million plays.