How to protect yourself from the ‘cyber jihad’
The Islamic State group has claimed responsibility for the hacking of Sony Pictures Entertainment’s emails and Twitter accounts.
The attacks on Sony and Twitter, which targeted a range of celebrities including Jennifer Lawrence, led to a worldwide internet outage and resulted in the closure of thousands of websites.
On Thursday, the White House announced it had sent a warning to companies that may be affected by the cyber attacks, which it described as a “serious breach of trust”.
The attack on Sony Pictures came just days after the US Senate voted to extend the nation’s National Cybersecurity and Communications Integration Center’s (NCIC) mandate, which was originally set to expire at the end of 2018.
The NCIC, which is tasked with developing the National Cyber Security and Communications Infrastructure, has been under the direction of Director of National Intelligence James Clapper since December 2017.
The extension would give the NCIC more flexibility in responding to cybersecurity threats.
The National Cyber Emergency Response Command has been tasked with ensuring that NCIC personnel are prepared to deploy in the event of a cyber attack.
The cyber attack was the latest in a string of incidents to affect Sony and its staff, with a cybersecurity breach at Sony Pictures forcing the studio to suspend filming and its movies being pulled from online sales.
The attack took place on the evening of December 13, just two days after a separate hack took place at Microsoft, which affected a range in the entertainment industry.
The hackers used a different technique to compromise Sony Pictures and accessed the company’s network, the company said.
The company said the attack, dubbed “Eve of Destruction” by security firm Mandiant, was conducted through the use of “malicious code” that targeted “operations, systems, and networks” at Sony.
“This is a very significant breach of confidence in our core business and our industry, which we all share,” Sony Pictures Chairman Tom Rothman said in a statement.
“It is a clear message to the entertainment community and to the rest of the world that there are risks to our security.”
The FBI and Homeland Security are investigating the cyber breach.
Sony Pictures said it was working with federal law enforcement and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) to investigate the hack.