Leader Kim Jong Un and senior members of his regime will now face fresh restrictions on their cash and bank accounts.
The new sanctions from America are in response to continued human rights abuses and repeated nuclear tests by the secretive state.
Christian Solidarity Worldwide said it welcomed the decision by the United States Department of the Treasury.
Adam J. Szubin, Acting Under Secretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence at the White House, said: "Under Kim Jong Un, North Korea continues to inflict intolerable cruelty and hardship on millions of its own people, including extrajudicial killings, forced labour, and torture.
"The actions taken by the Administration under an Act of Congress highlight the U.S. Government's condemnation of this regime's abuses and our determination to see them stopped."
Benedict Rogers, CSW's East Asia Team Leader, said: "We are delighted that the United States has decided to link targeted sanctions specifically to the grave violations of human rights in North Korea, and to target key individuals, including Kim Jong-Un, responsible for these crimes.
"It is essential that the international community realises that change will only come when the leaders of the regime feel the pressure, and targeted sanctions is one means for applying pressure.
"We hope the European Union and others will follow, by linking sanctions to human rights violations and not only to the security issues and nuclear proliferation, and by carefully targeting sanctions on key leaders."