Sony Signs Security Supremo


Sony hires a former US government security chief on its road to recovery from embarrassing data breaches

After its humiliation at the hands of hackers this summer Sony has appointed a former US government cyber security official to its top security post.

From today, Philip Reitinger is Sony’s senior vice president and chief information security officer. As Sony’s top information security executive he is responsible for protecting information “assets and services” from security and privacy threats, a company announcement said.

“Certainly the network issue was a catalyst for the appointment,” a Sony spokesman told Reuters. “We are looking to bolster our network security even further.”

Reitinger’s CV includes stints at the US Department of Homeland Security, Microsoft, the US Department of Defense, and the US Department of Justice.

Caught napping

Sony suffered a massive breach of its PlayStation Network in April this year when cyber criminals made off with millions of users’ personal information. Its Sony Pictures service was also breached in a separate attack some weeks later.

The intimacy of the stolen data – names, addresses, e-mail, genders, birthdates, phone numbers, usernames, and passwords – humbled one of the world’s biggest electronics companies.

Sony was forced to take the service offline for several weeks and it priced the damage caused at more than £100m.

The attack propelled a then little known hacking group named Lulzsec to centre stage, which then embarked on a headline grabbing summer spree of DDoS attacks and data thefts from government and big business.

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