The hackers who broke into Sony's PlayStation Network and stole personal information on as many as 100 million customers launched their attack from Amazon Web Services' EC2 public cloud, according to reports.
A person with knowledge of the matter told Bloomberg that the hackers used an alias to rent an AWS server. The account has reportedly now been closed down.
Security experts suspect that pay-per-use models of public cloud computing services like Amazon's are increasingly used by cyber criminals to launch such attacks.
While in this instance it appears that the hackers directed their efforts outside the EC2 infrastructure, the news may nonetheless cause a few jitters among AWS users.
Former FBI cyber crime investigator E J Hilbert told Bloomberg that the FBI is likely to subpoena Amazon or try to obtain a search warrant as part of its investigation.
"The subpoena will give law enforcement a history of the transactions," Hilbert reportedly said. "The search warrant will get them more detailed information, including payment information and which credit card was used."
It still remains unclear who carried out the attack. Sony has blamed online hacktivist group Anonymous for distracting its security team at the time of the hack by launching a denial-of-service attack against the firm's web sites.
In addition, according to a Financial Times report last week, two members of Anonymous admitted that some rogue members of the online collective may have been behind the attacks.
Sony is also reportedly considering offering a reward to catch those responsible for the data breach.
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