Sony CEO condemns 'extortionist' cyber attack
Kazuo Hirai criticizes cyber attack, but praises employees and partners for standing up to hack
Sony CEO Kazuo Hirai has criticized the recent cyber attack against Sony, but praised the company employees and partners for standing up to "extortionist efforts of criminals".
Speaking before his keynote at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES), in Las Vegas, Hirai described the attack as one of the most malicious cyber attacks in recent times.
"Both Sony, former employees and current employees were the victim of one of the most vicious and malicious cyber attacks in recent history," Hirai said, according to the BBC.
Sony had been targeted by a cyber attack that included theft and piracy of movies, and the release of company employee information and emails.
The hack was carried out by a group calling itself ‘The Guardians of Peace', in apparent effort to stop Sony releasing a movie called ‘The Interview', about a fictitous plot to kill North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.
The movie was initially pulled from distribution, but was then made available online, taking $15m in downloads in its first three days of availability.
Hirai commented: "I have to say that I'm very proud of all the employees, and certainly the partners who stood up against the extortionist efforts of criminals, and worked tirelessly, sometimes for days on end to bring you The Interview.
"I have to say that freedom of speech, freedom of expression, freedom of association - those are very important lifelines for Sony and our entertainment business," he added.