Recent internet controversy over the hacking of Sony Pictures and Sony Playstation Network appears to be causing internet connection wars. For starters, the involvement of North Korea is no joke, even though the U.S. appears to be taking the reaction of North Korea leader, Kim Jong-un pretty lightly. Not only that, it appears the FBI. is involved and may be tightening up cybersecurity after Sony Pictures had sensitive information released from online hackers.
This cyber security mess began to mount when mega data breaches broke out on the internet, starting with Target and Home Depot. About a year ago, Target had its biggest data breach happen among one of the biggest holiday shopping seasons. Credit card information was allegedly stolen from about 40 million customers. Home Depot was also hit earlier this year with around 50 million accounts affected.
Recently, Sony Pictures became the victim of hackers when sensitive information was leaked and revealed on the internet. Reports indicated the hack may have been due to the controversial film from Sony Pictures called The Interview, where American actors portray a plot to kill Kim Jong-un in an interview with the North Korean supreme leader. Though the movie is intended to be a comedy, it appeared to have triggered controversy not only linked to the hacking of Sony Pictures, but also toward the tumultuous relationship between the U.S. and North Korea.
Sony had sought to prevent the release of the movie, but after criticism from the likes of such people as President Obama, The Interview was released as planned on Christmas Day, and made available in selected theaters and through online services. That same day, the online service to Sony Playstation Network was disabled.
Coincidentally, it happened that one of the first theaters to showcase the Sony movie had no internet service as well. Though service issues were apparent all week for The Plaza Theatre in Atlanta, GA, it did not appear to be connected to the hacking which was alleged to be the responsibility of North Korea. It also did not appear to be connected to the internet hacking by a group called the Lizard Squad who allegedly took responsibility for cutting off service to both Sony Playstation Network and Microsoft Xbox One online service on Christmas Day.
Whether Lizard Squad, its affiliates, North Korea, China, Russia, or hackers located in the United Kingdom hacked any or all systems of these corporations, or not, it shows there is an internet connection war going on. Hackers appear to be flexing their online muscles against cybersecurity tactics involving sensitive information from around the world. The question to be asked is whether consumers who use credit card information and give personal data on the internet should be highly concerned over the capability of corporations to defend itself from these type of cyber attacks which exist on the internet.
Any corporation or network should obviously be aware of all possible cyber attacks which could affect its systems, as well as sensitive information contained within those systems – particularly those stored on the internet. In this age of technology, it is vital for any network which uses online services to conduct transactions and business matters to not only secure its network, but also find ways to provide superior defense technologies against cyber attacks.
Seth Rosenblatt of CNET stated credit cards have the potential of being upgraded to include a more secure chip, though the cost to implement the system may cost in the millions of dollars to do so. Apple Inc., however, has already implemented Apply Pay, a system designed exclusively for iPhone-6 users who not only desire to make consumer shopping easier, but with an edge on security tactics. With the leak of prominent actress, Jennifer Lawrence’s iCloud, however, users may have to test-run the product first.
For now, there appears to be an unspoken internet connection war where countries are blaming each other and corporations are being targeted. Even those who use smart electronic devices and the internet, in general, risk their personal data information if entered online. The smart thing for anyone to do, including the FBI, is to invest in any kind of defensive mechanism after also attempting to trace disruptive sources as best as possible. If it appears there are various sources, perhaps there is a way to prevent all neurons from firing at once, per say.
Opinion By Liz Pimentel
Dave Bleasdale – Flickr License