The National Security Agency, or the NSA has reportedly has had it on good authority that North Korea was likely behind the cyberattack on Sony Pictures. That being said, new documents reveal just how much the NSA probably knew, and why the FBI, as well as other agencies within the United States, were so willing, and so quick to place blame on North Korea. As the documents tell, it would appear as though the NSA had actually been watching North Korea going all the way back to 2010 – and that actually might have been the first time that anyone really began to see this as a threat that would likely come to fruition.
Former U.S. officials pointed out that agencies like the NSA had actually worked their way into North Korea’s network in 2010 in an effort to collect information. However, what started as a relatively tame preventive project, based on collecting information, “expanded into an ambitious effort to place malware that could track the internal workings of many of the computers and networks used by the North’s hackers.” They went on to point out that hacking into North Korea’s network allowed them to place specific “beacons” that allowed members of the NSA and other government agencies to track the digital activity.
As the findings related to proving that North Korea was behind the attack, it was clear that President Obama actually needed a significant amount of proof that North Korea was behind the attack. The pointed out that with the information that the FBI collected during their investigation, and that “several times they got sloppy,” with regards to being tracked and spotted – it’s clear that according to officials within the investigating bodies that conducted the investigation – the evidence that was collected throughout the initial portions of the NSA’s work – was crucial in making this allegations a reality.
However, it remains to be seen how this will react with the general public. If the NSA did actually know that an attack was imminent on Sony Pictures – why didn’t they do more actually to combat the threat? Furthermore, if they knew about this, and didn’t do anything – what else do they know, but haven’t acted on? They are questions that will surely need to be addressed as time goes on.