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Inside North Korea’s Totalitarian Operating System

The goal of a totalitarian regime is to control everything in a country: information, resources, and power. In the 21st century, that even includes omnipotence over the code that the country’s computers use.

Enter RedStar OS: North Korea’s own Linux based operating system, designed to monitor its users and remain resilient to any attempts to modify or otherwise exert control over it. On Sunday at Chaos Communication Congress, a security, art, and politics conference held annually in Hamburg, Germany, researchers Niklaus Schiess and Florian Grunow presented their in-depth investigation of the third version of the operating system.