South Korean Unification Ministry, the ministry which handles relations with North Korea has been targeted by hackers an official said Tuesday.

The Unification Ministry's cyber-attack is the latest of a series of online attacks on the South Korean government and corporate websites.

The team of hackers used Chinese IP addresses and planted malicious software in the email account of a lawmaker's aide in an attempt to attack the unification ministry's website.

Kim Young-Pil, an official at the ministry's cyber security centre, told Yonhap news agency the National Intelligence Service alerted the ministry about the attempted attack.

The security centre subsequently requested for the lawmaker's aide to either change his password or close the email account, which appeared to be successful as the ministry website was not disrupted.

According to officials, the last months have seen a rise in attempts to hack into the ministry's computer network, but no further details have emerged.

Following security fears however, last month the South's defence ministry announced it would expand its cyber warfare unit attacks coming from North Korea reportedly kept on increasing.

The ministry said its cyber command, launched in January last year, would see an increase of up to 100 new personnel, raising the total number to 500.

It is not the first time Seoul accuses Pyongyang of staging cyber-attacks on its government websites as in 2009 similar accusations emerged and in May, South Korea said a North Korean cyber-attack paralysed operations at one of its largest banks.

Pyongyang, on the other hand has always rejected such accusations, which it said were used by Seoul as a propaganda tool to fuel tensions between the two countries.