Sony Pictures Targeted by Apparent Hack Attack to Corporate Systems

Sony Pictures

Sony Pictures Entertainment has told employees companywide to not connect to corporate networks or access email, after the studio was hit Monday by what appeared to be a malicious hacker attack threatening to disclose “secrets,” Variety has confirmed.

The apparent hack was reported earlier by “We are investigating an I.T. matter,” SPE spokeswoman Jean Guerin said in an emailed statement. The hack apparently is not affecting other divisions of Sony Corp., sources said.

[UPDATE, Nov. 25, 10:30 PT: SPE’s corporate email systems are still offline. “Sony Pictures Entertainment experienced a system disruption, which we are working diligently to resolve,” the company said in a statement.]

According to a source at Sony Pictures, the company is telling employees that the situation may take anywhere from one day to three weeks to resolve. The source said a photo appeared on company computers Monday morning with an image of a skeleton and a message saying “Hacked by #GOP.” The message then says, “Warning: We’ve already warned you, and this is just the beginning… We have obtained all your internal data including secrets and top secrets.”

Sony’s information-technology departments have instructed employees to turn off their computers as well as disable Wi-Fi on all mobile devices.

The “Hacked by #GOP” message warned that the data supposedly obtained from Sony’s systems would be divulged Nov. 24, at 11 p.m. GMT, which is 3 p.m. Pacific/6 p.m. Eastern on Monday. It isn’t clear at this point which individual or group is responsible for the attack, or specifically what the hackers’ aims are.

The SPE attack is being linked to a group calling itself “Guardians of Peace,” Bloomberg reported, citing an anonymous source.

In August, hackers claimed they took down Sony’s PlayStation Network via a denial-of-service attack, which overwhelms systems with bogus network requests. According to the company, no personal data of PlayStation Network’s 53 million users was compromised in the Aug. 24 incident, and access was restored the following day. In 2011, a more serious security breach exposed names and passwords of millions of PlayStation Network customers.

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  1. mike says:

    Did you fail to expound on the FULL name of hacker group IMMEDIATELY AFTER the group’s hashtag on PURPOSE? Based on MYRIAD examples throughout journalism, whenever an abbreviation or acronym is used, UNLESS said abbreviation or acronym is seen as common knowledge, the FULL name added IMMEDIATELY after. You, however, CHOOSE not to do so UNTIL THE END OF THE ARTICLE.

    Why is that? Are we prissy that your man in the White House is getting his ass savagely kicked all over the MSM, perhaps?

    You’ll be able to fool those who share the same twisted & delusional ideology as you and your anti-American brethren in office, but for the rest of the vast MAJORITY of AMERICANS, we see it for EXACTLY what it is and it smacks of petulant, snot-nosed childishness that embarrass even the very same children you imitate.

    Because of this, it is my FERVENT hope that the current problem you find yourself in, indeed buries you into abject poverty. Looking back, you’re probably regretting putting out shitty movie after shitty movie, based on Obama’s marching orders, huh?

    Myself, nor anyone else, feels the LEAST BIT SORRY FOR YOU. You get – and GOT – what you so richly deserve.

    Good riddance to Sony garbage.

  2. Seekscale says:

    All our support is with the Sony IT team

    They must be diving in their logs right now, given the size of the studios they probably have Terabytes to investigate…

  3. Gorn Stevens says:

    Revenge for making terrible Spider-Man films. “Give the rights back to Marvel or ELSE.” hehe

  4. Brian E says:

    Three minutes to showtime…will these hackers make good on their threats, or did Sony give in to the still-unknown demands?

  5. Nemo says:

    Did Sony not write their own script for this? Isn’t this a movie from Paramount Pictures? Seems a bit Woo woo and self-fulfilling to me. If it’s not, I claim first dibs on movie rights… fo’ those Ben-jam-ins.

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