Sony Pictures was hacked earlier this week, causing huge headlines, a backlash against north Korea, celebrity reactions, and leaks of huge upcoming movies. Loads of data was stolen, including passwords to social media accounts, promotional copies of movies, employee data, as well.
Blockbuster flicks Fury, Annie, Still Alice, Mr. Turner, and To Write Love on Her Arms were subsequently released through The Pirate bay, and celebrities are already reacting to the debacle, such as Seth Rogen and James Franco, the latter deciding to leak the username and password of an e-mail account and some very special pictures of himself and Rogen ahead of them being discovered.
“I have this movie called The Interview coming out with Seth Rogen at Sony, and this week Sony Studios got all of their computers hacked. This is true. These hackers have leaked real personal information about everybody that works with Sony. Social security numbers, emails — and I know eventually they’re going to start leaking out stuff about me. So, before you hear it from someone else, I thought it would be better if you hear it from me.”
James Franco, speaking on Saturday Night Live
Franco’s move was certainly brave, but what about the hack itself? In the rest of this article we’ve cobbled together recent news on the who, the where, and the how behind the hacking scandal in order to shed some light on the situation.
Taking the blame for a hack seems like a stupid move, but it;’s also a popular way to expand your infamy to take the top spot as the ‘flavor of the month’ in the world of hacking. Hacker groups love to show off, and every time the latest scandal comes around supposed perpetrators love to take the limelight, even if it’s just a fifteen minutes of fame and nobody knows who they actually are.
Those behind the Sony Pictures hack call themselves ‘Guardians of Peace’, and they managed to slip through Sony’s notoriously thin security net in part due to the apparent sidelining of said security by Sony staff. GOP boasted that the company do not take system vulnerabilities seriously at all in a public release following the incident.
Nobody really knows where the GOP are based, but recent reports that the hacker’s IP address was traced to a Thailand hotel, so it may be that the hackers are based somewhere in Asia.
Previously the hack was thought to have originated in north Korea, as Sony pictures were behind The interview, a recent film mocking the North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un which depicted an assassination attempt against the pudgy despot.
The North Koreans have denied any involvement, but have expressed their pleasure and extended praise towards the hackers, suggesting that the hack was a ‘righteous deed’ from ‘supporters and sympathizers’ of the North Korean cause.
On a more serious note, the hackers also made off with 33,000 documents including personal information such as payroll paperwork and social security numbers and alarmingly, the home addresses of 47,000 Sony Pictures employees. Sadly, people are getting harassed due to these leaks, and of course having one’s address posten online would make anyone uneasy.
The security breach highlighted a recurring theme in Sony’s security policy, and as we’ve said before, even the hackers were somehow aware of the lack of security within Sony, and the disregard their IT team showed for vulnerabilities. The Playstation Network famously was hacked some years ago, and was struck again this August.
Malware was used to gain access to the data, which was distributed via unknown means into the company’s systems. however, there have been some statements from the hackers that may or may not confirm that there were people within the company, or with access to company offices, involved in the hack.
Via: The Verge