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Sony probes hacker link to North Korea comedy

Hack might have been launched in retaliation for comedy about plot to assassinate Kim Jong Un.

By Mary Papenfuss
Sony probes hacker link to North Korea comedy
Sony investigators suspect a hack attack and subsequent leak of at least five unreleased films may be retaliation for a comedy about a plot to assassinate North Korea Kim Jong Un. UPI/Stephen Shaver | License Photo

CULVER CITY, Calif., Dec. 1 (UPI) -- Sony officials suspect the hack attack against the company likely tied to a leak of unreleased films may have been launched in retaliation for a movie about a plot to assassinate North Korea leader Kim Jong Un.

Last week's hack into the Sony Pictures computer network shut down the system. But troubles continue as at least five unreleased films, including "Annie" and "Fury," have now been leaked online in the wake of the hack attack.

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War movie "Fury," starring Brad Pitt, has already been illegally downloaded 880,000 times.

The attack was carried out by hackers calling themselves the Guardians of Peace who froze computer screens across the company with the message "Hacked by #GOP" and a ticking clock as the attackers threatened to release "secrets and top secrets" about Sony.

Sony investigators are probing the possibility that the hack, which they suspect was instigated by North Korea but launched from China, was punishment for the company's yet-to-be-released comedy "The Interview," starring James Franco and Seth Rogen, about a plot to assassinate Kim.

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Unofficial North Korea government spokesman Kim Myong-chol slammed the film in an interview with the Telegraph, saying it "shows the desperation of the U.S. government and American society."

The film was not one of the five leaked.

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