As we’ve seen in the past year, not even Hollywood is immune to online security breaches. We saw it on a personal level, with stars like Jennifer Lawrence, Kate Upton and Kris Jenner having their clouds hacked into and nude photos being revealed. This was shocking, yet not totally surprising. However, when it happened on a corporate level and Sony Pictures had their system breached, it was alarming. After strong criticisms about not protecting their staff and clients’ privacy, Sony and all of Hollywood realized it better get its act together and implement new measures to secure their confidential data. Here we discuss the issues and some ways that Hollywood technology security is changing and improving.
What Went Wrong With Sony’s Online Security?
At one time, not so long ago, it was simple for Hollywood executives to keep their secrets secure. All one had to do was confiscate a crew member’s computer or cellphone that was issued by the company. Now, employees in Tinsel Town have their own personal smartphones and devices that receive company emails and contain apps with data stored on cloud computers. If your crew isn’t willing to follow the rules, it is difficult for the executives to manage what information is shared. This is why experts believe North Korean hackers were able to expose personal emails and details about Sony last year. Hollywood studios quickly realized they needed to improve how they guard their most sensitive files.
How Hollywood Manages Technology Security Today
Most of Hollywood has turned to the help of managed services for technology security. These companies are able to wrap files individually with passwords, encryption and monitoring systems that keep track of who is accessing and doing what with sensitive files. The service that Sony is using gives the creators of the files the ability to manage who can edit, share, view, scan and print a file and for how long they are able to do these tasks. If hackers swipe the file from someone’s computer, the only thing they can view is a group of encrypted characters. Many Hollywood studios have removed their movie editing software completely off the Internet so hackers have no chance of getting to it.
Updating Old Systems in Hollywood
Hollywood studios have always had some paranoia about their scripts being stolen. The old way of protecting the scripts was to etch them with watermarks, and print them on colored or mirrored paper so they could not be photocopied. (In some cases, these practices are still used.) At times, plot endings are completely left out and the most precious scripts are locked in briefcases. Unfortunately now watermarks can be lifted and color copiers can duplicate any color script.
In the vain of old-time tricks, the new security companies are developing invisible watermarking to be added to files. There is even a feature that mimics how it looks to hold a bright flashlight over a script in the dark. This feature makes it hard for anyone looking over your shoulder to read the documents, and it will thwart hackers who try to get screen shots of the document or the web browser. While it will take some getting used to, Hollywood is working to embrace these new technology security tactics to protect their most sensitive materials.