Sony to resume some services


SONY IS to resume some services on its popular PlayStation network early this week after it was forced to shut it down last week following the theft of personal information belonging to about 77 million users worldwide.

At a lengthy news conference in Tokyo yesterday, senior executives from the electronics giant made their first public remarks on the massive security breach and apologised to customers.

In an effort to control a crisis that began after details of the security breach emerged last Thursday, the company said it would offer some free content, including 30 days’ free membership to a premium service to some existing users and reduced credit card fees to others as long as they did not abandon it in favour of its rivals in the online gaming space.

The breach, that took place between April 17th and 19th, may have exposed private details of 77 million account holders, although Sony insisted again yesterday there was no evidence credit card data had been compromised.

The exact nature of the information stolen remains unclear but it is widely believed users’ names, e-mail addresses, passwords and other personal information were exposed to a hacker whose identity is as yet unknown.

The FBI in the US has begun an investigation.

“This criminal act against our network had a significant impact not only on our consumers but our entire industry,” Sony’s Kazuo Hirai said yesterday.

“These illegal attacks obviously highlight the widespread problem with cyber security.”

He said he was “deeply sorry for the great anxiety and trouble” inflicted on the network’s users.

Last week a spokesman for Ireland’s Data Protection Commissioner confirmed it had been in contact with Sony Ireland over the matter and was awaiting an initial report.