Hack attack on Sony will intensify calls in US for stiffer sanctions on North Korea

Associated Press

Suspicions that North Korea was behind a hacking attack against Sony Pictures and a threat against movie theaters are leading to intensified calls for tougher U.S. steps to cut that country's access to hard currency — and once more declare it as a state sponsor of terrorism.

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Bringing the shadowy hackers to justice appears a distant prospect. A U.S. cyber-retaliation would risk a dangerous escalation. And North Korea is already targeted by sanctions over its nuclear weapons program.

But the U.S. still has options if it formally decides North Korea was behind the hack that has prompted Sony to cancel its Christmas Day release of the movie "The Interview."

A senior Republican lawmaker says the U.S. should adopt tough banking sanctions that passed the House in the summer.

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