Hacking is a growing problem all over the world, says the Sony boss.
Sony CEO Howard Stringer says that the prolonged hacking campaign waged against it by hackers around the world is all down to the fact that the company tried to protect its company assets - in this case, videogames. Sony has suffered a number of online attacks and intrusions, the most notable being the attack on the PlayStation Network, which was subsequently out of action for more than a month.
Speaking at a shareholders meeting, Stringer said that there were people who didn't think that Sony should protect its assets. Stringer clearly felt that the event that led to the attacks was Sony's legal efforts against jailbreaker George "GeoHot" Hotz. Sony sued the 21-year-old after he posted the root key for the PS3 - which would allow people to run any software they wanted on the console - on his blog. The lawsuit was eventually settled out of court, with Hotz agreeing not to hack any Sony hardware again. Sony's actions drew the ire of hacker groups like Anonymous, which mounted attacks against various Sony websites over the course of several months.
Stringer also said that Sony was just one of a number of organizations that had come under attack from hackers. "Cyber terrorism is now a global force," he said."If hackers can hack Citibank, the FBI and the CIA ... then it's a negative situation that governments may have to resolve."
However, while few would argue that the attacks on Sony - which exposed the personal details of millions of people whose only crime was being Sony customers - were a disproportionate response to the lawsuit, Stringer isn't really showing the whole picture. He neglects to mention, for example, that part of Sony's efforts to protect its IPs involved removing features from the PS3 without the console owners' consent. That doesn't excuse the actions of the hackers, of course, but there are a lot of details and context that Stringer is brushing aside.