- Internet & the Web
What If North Korea Did Not Hack Sony?
Are we, the public, to believe the government officials that it was 100% sure North Korea did hack into Sony Pictures, stole information, and threatened the company not to release the film, The Interview?
Sony vows to release the movie in spite of continued threats.Stolen data exposing the company to extortion and blackmail already made public are damaging to the company and has prompted former and present employees to file five lawsuits against the company in private and class action suits. The hack stole and released five movies waiting for their official release.
Once the hackers obtained the "keys" to the system from the administrator, it would be akin to opening the front door to Sony and entering. Part of Sony's problem was how its computer structure and security was designed. Obviously, it was not secure, for in 2011, hackers had done this before and the lawsuit from it was settled in August, 2014.
The Sony hackers could easily have been a third party group calling themselves the "Guardians of Peace". The group could be Russian, Iranian, even China? Since there was a retaliatory attack on NK, which disconnected the country from all Internet connections, who did this? The USA? North Korea itself? Russia?
It took some time for the US cyber experts to point the finger at NK. Very little details have been provided to the media about how the evidence points to NK. We just have to believe the US government. This can be a dubious belief. What if, Russia or another entity, did the hack but made it look like it was NK? NK has said it did not do it. This can be a dubious belief. Now, North Korea's Internet connection to the world was disconnected. What if this "hacker entity" did this also, hoping to provoke NK believing it was the USA? I am sure North Korea does not know but firmly believes it was the United States. The whole point to this would be to provoke the USA and North Korea to escalate tensions and mistrust between them resulting in some sort of military action.
Of course, what if NK disconnected themselves from the Internet on purpose to create a "false" excuse to use military action or other actions against the USA? Entirely plausible. President Obama did say the USA will respond to the Sony hack. Access points to the Internet in NK comes from China. China might have shut off the connection to send NK a message. North Korea could have unplugged itself as a defensive measure from outside attacks. But, the Internet outage there is a Denial of Service to over 1000 North Korean websites. However, the White House cybersecurity coordinator did say Obama wants "to send a deterrence message to North Korea and … and others". The DoS attacks upon North Korean websites spiked over the weekend. But, a hacker group called, LizardSquad, has claimed it did this. They were the same group that hacked Sony playstation servers in 2011.
This makes one now suspect that maybe LizardSquad is also Guardians of Peace since they target Sony for some reason. If so, the third party argument grows. Also, cyber experts agree that North Korea's loss of Internet and how it was done is move how activists would do it rather than how a government would.