Sony IT Insider Claims Hack Not From North Korea

As a software development consultant, agile coach and someone who has been in the IT industry for nearly 20 years, I’ve had the pleasure of meeting literally thousands of IT executives. One of my contacts, who just happens to work at Sony, reached out to me this week and urged me to “blog to the world what really happened”.

He stated that the recent hack on Sony was not perpetrated by the North Korean government, but was one of a series of attacks that have been going on for over two years. According to my source, these recent attacks were part of a longer term series of snooping breaches that included successful DDoS (denial of service) attacks during the World Cup based on Sony sponsorship of FIFA.

My source was further dumbfounded by the US government’s response and the press briefing given by our President given the history of attacks that Sony has experienced over the years. While he agreed that the threats to theaters was something best handled by Homeland Security, he also stated that Sony has two media companies, Video Unlimited and Crackle, that could handle release of the movie The Interview.

My source goes on to state that the pattern of attacks have been known to Sony and that they have worked with 3rd party vendors to beef up security and have been successful in preventing additional attacks and that Sony is beginning the forensics to understand when and how the breaches occurred in the first place.

My personal opinion is that it is possible that the recent hacks were perpetrated by the North Korean government and that my source is confusing the previous DDoS attacks with the newer breaches. What I find more interesting is the speed with which the culprit was identified and the coincidence that the villain would be the same as the one depicted in the film. Of course, this whole fiasco is a wonderful marketing coup for the movie and with the free publicity in the press (including this blog if you can refer to it as the press), it will garner more revenue than it merits.

The only other time I ventured to blog about current events was the fiasco and in both these cases there was a speedy judgement and presidential pronouncement. While the press and politicians like a simple world with clear, black and white solutions (anyone find any weapons of mass destruction in Iraq lately?), my experience has taught me that the world of software development and computer networks is much more complex. In the end, we may find out that the hack was by the North Korean government or that my source at Sony was correct. Only time will tell.

– Larry Apke

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