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TheGrill 2016: Michael Lynton Recalls ‘Extremely Unfair’ Criticism of Sony Hack

”What we’ve seen is that nobody is adequately prepared,“ Sony Entertainment CEO Michael Lynton tells TheWrap

Sony Entertainment was unfairly criticized for its response to a devastating cyber attack two years ago, CEO Michael Lynton said on Tuesday.

After the 2014 hack on servers and systems at the Culver City, California, Sony Pictures lot, Lynton and the organization at large were condemned for a lack of preparedness — from podiums as high as President Obama’s.

“What we’ve seen is that nobody is adequately prepared,” Lynton told TheWrap CEO Sharon Waxman during a keynote conversation at TheGrill 2016 conference at Montage Beverly Hills.

“And certainly not when a sovereign comes after you,” he added, referring to the revelation that North Korea was responsible for the security breach over objections to the depiction of its leader, Kim Jong-Un, in the Seth Rogen comedy “The Interview.”

“That felt extremely unfair at the time,” Lynton continued.

Lynton said that many were distracted by the disclosure of executive emails and the controversy they created. “They didn’t properly understand the nature of the attack and the degree of vulnerability anyone would’ve had,” he said. “I haven’t seen one instance post-Sony of a whatever institution being criticized for having inadequate security, which is bizarre.”

So why was the distributor of “The Interview” singled out? “I supposed it’s because we were the first,” Lynton said.

The CEO spoke at length in a wide-ranging interview that touched on everything from a steep recent decline in DVD sales to unpacking motives of Chinese investment in Hollywood.

Watch the video above for his full remarks.