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Sony Pictures’ hack could have been an inside job, security firm reveals

Sony has yet to completely get back on its feet after being hit by a massive hack attack earlier this month. The hackers were able to get access to a colossal amount of confidential information, which

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Sony has yet to completely get back on its feet after being hit by a massive hack attack earlier this month. The hackers were able to get access to a colossal amount of confidential information, which they steadily leaked online. While North Korea is suspected to be the mastermind behind this attack, The Security Ledger report points to findings by security firm Norse, which claims that it could in fact be an inside job.

Norse has found evidence that “a group of six individuals” were behind the attack. One of them, the firm claims, was a former Sony Pictures employee “who worked in a technical role and had extensive knowledge of the company’s network and operations.”

The firm went through the HR documents leaked by hackers and traced the activity to the employee allegedly involved in the cyber attack. Norse followed the activities through social media, and IRC (Internet Relay Chat) forums, and was “able to capture communications with other individuals affiliated with underground hacking and hacktivist groups in Europe and Asia.” This employee in question is said to have been laid off by Sony earlier this year, which could be the reason for taking part in the crime.

Norse’s senior vice president Kurt Stammberger warns that the firm’s findings cannot be classified as conclusive proof, but it will be sharing the information with FBI nonetheless. If these findings are corroborated by the law agency, it will deal a serious blow on the US government’s claims that it was North Korean-backed hackers that attacked Sony.

The North Korean connection to the Sony attack is because of the movie ‘The Interview’. The movie starring Seth Rogen and James Franco is a mockumentary about two journalists allegedly hired by CIA to assassinate Kim Jong Un. Not surprisingly, North Korea took offence to the plot and classified it as an act of war, if Sony released the movie.

The Japanese company however went on to release the movie which has since become its biggest online movie ever. Despite the limited release, the movie garnered $15 million in sales, and has been downloaded or rented more than 2 million times.

  • Published Date: December 30, 2014 2:59 PM IST