$253 million worth music files compromised in Sony hack

The hack on Sony's widely used PlayStation Network was widely reported, last year and it managed to join the ranks of some of the other big headlines, last year. Sure enough, the PSN hack compromised the personal details of some 77 million registered online gamers and the hackers also gained access to credit card data. But, what followed close on the heels of the PSN hack went seemingly unreported, until now. The Daily Mail reports that almost around the same time as the PSN hack, Sony suffered yet another breach to its long, distinguished music catalogue, which contains titles from some noted artists, like Jimi Hendrix, Paul Simon, Olly Murs, the Foo Fighters and Avril Lavigne, all of which were compromised. However, the shocker that the report gave was that the hackers also managed to break into the entire roster of Michael Jackson’s back catalog of published music, as well as previously unreleased tracks. Sony, reportedly had purchased the Jackson catalog in 2010, a year after the singing legend's demise, after paying £250million for the seven-year rights to the songs.

Websites from both countries affected (Image credit: The Daily Caller)

Hacked again! (Image credit: The Daily Caller)



The report further reveals that a total of 50,000 songs are known to have been compromised, making this the biggest hack in the music industry, so far. The report pegs the entire loss to be around $253 million. After discovering the hack, Sony informed  the Jackson estate, but did not make the incident public, since no customer data had been compromised.  "The contract with Jackson's estate also allowed them to release 10 new albums, including material from studio sessions produced during the making of some of the star's biggest albums. The singer, who died in June 2009 at the age of 50, had recorded unreleased duets with artists ranging from the late Freddie Mercury and Black Eyed Peas singer Will.i.am," further added the report. 


Reportedly, Sony discovered that its music catalog was broken into during routine checking of social networking sites, Jackson fan sites and hacking forums. The reported quoted a source close to the company as saying that all that the company purcased from the Jackson estate was broked into by the hackers. Sony, then checked their systems only to discover the breach, with a degree of sophistication. Sony, reportedly then "identified the weakness and plugged the gap."

Published Date: Mar 16, 2012 10:50 am | Updated Date: Mar 16, 2012 10:50 am