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Cyber attack: Sony Pictures struggles to recover

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Los Angeles/Washington/Boston (Dec. 03, 2014): Eight days after a massive cyber attack on Sony Pictures Entertainment, the Hollywood studio was still struggling to restore some systems on Tuesday evening as investigators combed for evidence to identify the culprit.

Some employees at the Sony Corp entertainment unit studio were given new computers to replace ones that had been attacked with the rare data-wiping virus, which had made their machines unable to operate, according to a person with knowledge of Sony's operations.

The hack, which was launched Nov. 24, only affected computers with Microsoft Corp's Windows software, so Sony employees using Apple Inc Macs, including many in the marketing department, had not been affected, according to the person who was not authorized to publicly discuss the attack.

The difficulties to restore service at Sony underscore the severity of the breach, which experts say is the first major attack on a U.S. company to use a highly destructive class of malicious software that is designed to make computer networks unable to operate.

Government investigators led by the FBI are considering multiple suspects in the attack, including North Korea, according to a U.S. national security official with knowledge of the investigation.

The FBI on Monday warned U.S. businesses about hackers' use of malicious software and suggested ways to defend themselves. The warning said some of the software used by the hackers had been compiled in Korean, but it did not discuss any possible connection to North Korea.