By Geneva Pleasant, staff writer
Photo by Gunner Ferrand, staff photographer
According to Forbes, Sony has a market capitalization of over $20.15 billion, made over $78.2 billion in 2014, and is number 80 on Forbes 2000 World’s Most Valuable Brands, but that did not help it when it was hacked on November 24, 2014.
According to CNN, Sony was hacked by a group that call themselves the Guardians of Peace, or GOP. Personal emails, social security numbers, movies, scripts, celebrity aliases, and information on upcoming movies was all released to the public. The group left the Sony messages that looked eerily similar to those left on a South Korean bank that was hacked in 2013, which was attributed to North Korean hackers.
Some experts believe the hack was done by North Korea in retaliation to Sony’s movie, “The Interview,” which was supposed to hit theaters in December. The movie, featuring Seth Rogen and James Franco, was about a journalist and his producer who were going to interview Kim Jong Un, North Korea’s leader. The CIA intervened and asked the duo to assassinate Kim Jong Un. The hackers warned Sony not to release the movie, or the theaters would be attacked.
“I don’t think that Sony should’ve been released into theatres because that’s dangerous and the theaters could’ve been attacked. It was risky.” Lauren Mitchell, 10, commented.
Sony recalled the movie and uploaded it to places online, such as Youtube and Google Play. They then decided to release the movie to certain theaters. According to the International Business Times, between online and theater sales, the movie made over $18 billion.
Obama recently passed new sanctions on North Korea for its suspected role in the Sony hacks. According to USA Today, three of North Korea’s entities were sanctioned; the spy agency Reconnaissance General Bureau, the arms dealer Korea Mining Development Trading Corp. and the defense research arm Korea Tangun Trading Corporation.
Then, around Christmas time, Sony’s XBox and Playstation networks were hacked. The police in the United Kingdom have arrested 22 year-old Vinnie Omari and accused him of the XBox and Playstation network hacks. He is supposedly a member of the hacking group “Lizard Squad.”
The FBI have not confirmed or denied North Korea’s involvement in the hack yet, although it is suspected that they are behind it. The hacking is still being investigated by the US government.