Third Time a Charm for Sony?
Sony Corporation continues to take a hit in the media headlines this week, following a series of cyber attacks that brought down its Internet gaming giant, the PlayStation Network, and jeopardized as many as 100 million users’ accounts.
The breach, which was first reported late last month, “resulted from a very carefully planned, very professional, highly sophisticated criminal cyber attack designed to steal personal and credit card information for illegal purposes,” a Sony executive told the Associated Press.
According to reports, the hackers’ first cyber hit on the Sony servers granted them access to roughly 77 million email addresses and credit card data. But the breach didn’t end there.
Again last week, Sony said that another 24.6 million accounts had been compromised, causing the media conglomerate to close down its infected PlayStation networks and open up an extensive investigation into the issue.
According to the Wall Street Journal, Sony has invested in the help of three IT corporations specializing in cybersecurity services to help delve deeper into who may be behind the hack.
The three firms, Protiviti Inc., Guidance Software Inc. and Data Forte Corp. declined the WSJ’s request for comment, but according to today’s reports, it may be because the trio has their hands tied while investigating yet another attack attempt on the Sony systems.
But the third and latest attempt may have been thwarted, according to CNET, which said this morning that their article published last Thursday may have alerted Sony of the hackers’ further plans and allowed the corporation to ramp up its defense efforts ahead of another hack.
Whether or not that’s the case, Sony isn’t taking the breach lightly. Apologizing to customers in a blog post, Sony CEO Howard Stringer called the attacks “a frustrating time for all.”
“We are absolutely dedicated to restoring full and safe service as soon as possible and rewarding you for your patience,” Stringer added, noting that Sony has also brought the FBI and other law enforcement agencies on board for assistance.
And while customers wait to reap the said rewards for damages done to personal data, it seems Sony may also be planning to offer up a reward to anyone who comes forward with information leading to the hackers’ convictions, according to All Things Digital.
Meanwhile, in an attempt to get ahead of the finger-pointing, the infamous hacker group ‘Anonymous’ has denied claims that it was part of the PlayStation Network take-down, the International Business Times reported, following a press release posted by a man who claims to have connections to the group.
And while the Sony saga continues to unfold, Bloomberg reports that the corporation’s compromised systems could be out of commission for the month of May, with a May 31 deadline set for when the company plans to have its services and security back up and fully restored.
Until then, check out the following cybersecurity news headlines:
FBI cyber attack probes hampered by training troubles (Huffington Post)
FBI defends cyber investigation capabilities (InformationWeek)
US Navy details ambitious IT plan (InformationWeek)
Top cybersecurity executive outlines new net ecosystem (GovInfoSecurity)
Cyber hiring to surge by 2015 (NextGov)
Canada new breeding ground for cyber crime (National Post)
Rabobank network floored by cyber attack (Dutch News)
Federal CIOs predict more contractors in cybersecurity, enterprise architectures (Washington Technology)
Lockheed Martin, Carnegie Mellon pursue cybersecurity innovation (Press Release)
Norton unveils global initiative to combat cybercrime (Press Release)
URS buys Apptis Holdings for $260M (BizJournals)