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    The cyberattack on Sony Pictures may well go down in history as the biggest hack of our times, but there was no shortage of big hacks and data breaches this year.

    MOSCOW, December 26 (Sputnik) – A brazen cyberattack on Sony Pictures has been making headlines for over a month. It may well go down in history as the biggest hack of our times, but this year has been rife with other big hacks and data breaches. Sputnik offers you a list of top five biggest cyberattacks of 2014.

    1. The Sony Hack

    On November 24, hackers calling themselves "Guardians of Peace" launched an attack on Sony Pictures Entertainment, stealing terabytes of sensitive data. Soon Social Security numbers, emails and salaries of both celebrities and Sony employees, as well copies of unreleased movies became available online.

    Many speculated that North Korea was behind the massive data breach, since the attack happened several days before the planned premiere of "The Interview", a comedy about a fictional CIA assassination attempt on North Korean leader Kim Jong-un.

    On December 19, the FBI officially placed the blame for the attack on North Korea, although Pyongyang repeatedly denied it was behind the hack.

    "The Interview" has since been released to mixed reviews ranging from praise to criticism.

    2. Russian Prime Minister’s Twitter

    Official account of Russia’s Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev was hacked on August 14. Hoaxers published several provocative tweets, with one saying that Medvedev was resigning to become a freelance photographer. The messages were removed an hour later.
    No group or individual took the responsibility for the hack.

    3. Nude celebrity photos

    In late August and September, several hundred photos of celebrities, including "Hunger Games" star Jennifer Lawrence and socialite Kim Kardashian, were released online after Apple's online backup service, iCloud, was hacked. The pictures, some of them nudes, were uploaded from 100 accounts to a forum, known as 4chan.

    In response to the incident, referred to as the Fappening, Apple tightened iCloud’s security, the Wired reported. The technological giant introduced a two-factor authentication and installed an alert system, which sends an email once an account is accessed from a new device.

    4. CyberBerkut hacktivists

    In November, the CyberBerkut hacktivist collective published on its website confidential US documents, according to which Washington was ready to provide lethal weaponry to Kiev. The group allegedly obtained the documents by hacking a mobile device belonging to a member of the US delegation, headed by Vice President Joe Biden. They visited Ukraine on November 20-21.

    Throughout the year, the group has been involved in several high-profile leaks. They are believed to have released the infamous conversation between Victoria Nuland and Geoffrey Pyatt, the US ambassador to Ukraine, shortly before a military coup in Ukraine.

    They also blocked phones of members of the Ukrainian Parliament, as well as hacked websites of Ukraine’s President Petro Poroshenko and the country’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

    5. eBay data breach

    Between February and March, hackers stole personal data, including passwords, phone numbers and physical addresses, of a swooping 233 million eBay users, the retailer said in a statement. The Syrian Electronic Army claimed responsibility for the hack.

    Following the attack, the eBay claimed that financial information was safe, since it is stored on other servers. However, the company urged users to change their passwords.

    Although, cyberattacks do not make headlines daily, they happen a lot more often than you might think. Russian security giant, Kaspersky Lab, estimated that over 21 million cyberattacks took place globally in 2014 so far.

    The company also created an interactive map, showing attacks happening in real time. A frightening, but captivating view, isn’t it?

    Topic:
    Highlights of 2014 (8)

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    Tags:
    Democratic Republic of North Korea (DPRK), The Interview, cybersecurity, cyber attack, cyber security, Sony Pictures, eBay, Dmitry Medvedev
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