Top Sony executives received a threatening email from hackers days before the studio was attacked and temporarily shut down, but apparently never opened them, according to new leaked documents.
“Pay the damage, or Sony Pictures will be bombarded as a whole,” the email read in part.
The note is signed “God’sApstls,” an alias also found in other documents associated with the attack.
The hack exposed personal information — including salaries and home addresses — of current employees and those who stopped working at Sony as far back as 2000 when the information was leaked to various news outlets and over BitTorrent.
While North Korea at first would not confirm or deny that it was behind the hacking as retaliation for Sony’s Seth Rogen-James Franco comedy “The Interview,” which revolves around an assassination attempt on the country’s leader Kim Jung-un, it then reportedly denied involvement, calling the accusations “another fabrication targeting the country.”
However, a new message posted online Monday demanded that the film be pulled from its scheduled release, which seems to contradict the idea that there is no North Korea link.
Additionally, earlier reports indicated findings from Sony, the FBI and private security firms turned up evidence that the malware was allegedly created on a machine with Korean language settings, was created during Korea-based hours and shares similarities to previous attacks attributed to North Korea.
The FBI will visit Sony Pictures Entertainment’s Culver City headquarters on Wednesday for employee cybersecurity awareness briefings, and CEO Michael Lynton has also scheduled an “all hands” meeting on Friday to update employees on the latest.
See the screenshot of the full email at Mashable.