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The identity of the Sony Pictures hackers who attacked last week remains a mystery, but we have an alleged location where the attack was masterminded from, according to a report from Bloomberg.
According to an unnamed source in the report, Sony Pictures’ hacking was traced to the five star St. Regis hotel in Thailand’s capital, Bangkok, where attackers used the hotel’s high speed wireless internet to steal 47,000 social security numbers, and other information. Later in the week, five Sony Pictures movies – including four as yet unreleased – were leaked online.
What is not clear from the report is whether the Sony Pictures hacking was undertaken by a guest at the hotel, or just someone accessing the wi-fi from a public area within the hotel, with Gizmodo reporting that “experts are not ruling out the possibility that the leak was carried out remotely and only taking advantage of the open network.”
While last week it was suggested that North Koreans could be behind the attack as revenge for an upcoming film fictionalizing an assassination attempt of leader Kim Jong-Un, spread in part by a non-denial from a North Korean spokesman, this week the country has issued a flat-out denial. According to Reuters, the Pyongyang government’s state-run media stated suggestions that the country was to blame for the attack was “wild rumor.”
“The hacking into Sony Pictures Entertainment might be a righteous deed of the supporters and sympathizers with the DPRK in response to its appeal,” the KCNA news agency added.
In other news relating to the Sony Pictures hacking story, it appears that employees within the organization are receiving emails threatening them and their families if they fail to side with the hackers. The Register reports that an email purporting to be from the head of the hacking team responsible states: “Please sign your name to object the false of the company at the email address below if you don’t want to suffer damage. If you don’t, not only you but your family will be in danger.”
It is not clear whether the email is from the real hackers, or is a spoof based on the data leaked, but for the moment at least it seems that the drama that has engulfed Sony Pictures for the last week shows no sign of easing off.
Ken Wolter / Shutterstock.com
Author Alan Martin, ESET