PlayStation Network To Resume This Week, Sony Introduce “Welcome Back” Program

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Sony held a press conference in Tokyo, Sunday afternoon, addressing the recent attack on the PlayStation Network. Speaking with journalists at the event, Sony representatives conducted a presentation regarding the issue and followed up with a Q&A session.


Sony representatives stated that there is still no evidence of credit card information having been stolen, but advised customers to keep an eye on their credit card statements all the same.


Sony Computer Entertainment CEO, Kaz Hirai, revealed that there are about 10 million credit cards registered with the PlayStation Network. Information on credit cards, Sony claimed, was in fact stored in a separate location on the system and was encrypted. Passwords, however, were not encrypted, but were “hashed”.


When asked by a Nikkei reporter what Sony felt the reasons behind the attack were, Hirai replied that, while there was some speculation as to the reason behind the attack, Sony are “not in a position to say one way or another.” Hirai added: “Even though we have some information, it is within the realm of speculation.”


Sony are also creating the position of a “Chief Information Security Officer,” reporting directly to Shinji Hasejima, Chief Information Officer of Sony Corporation, to ensure future accountability for customer data protection. Additionally, Sony say they have expedited the move of the PlayStation Network system to a new data centre that has been in development for “several months”.


The PlayStation Network online gaming service will resume this week, while other services such as the ability to purchase games will be brought online within the month of May. PlayStation 3 users will need to download a firmware update and change their password before logging in to the PlayStation Network once it goes back up. As an added security measure, Sony say, that password can only be changed on the same PS3 on which that specific account was activated, or through a validated email confirmation.


Sony also touched upon details of a “Welcome Back” program to compensate PlayStation Network users for the inconvenience. From Sony’s press release regarding the re-launch of the PlayStation Network service, the program will include:


  • Each territory will be offering selected PlayStation entertainment content for free download. Specific details of this content will be announced in each region soon.
  • All existing PlayStation Network customers will be provided with 30 days free membership in the PlayStation Plus premium service. Current members of PlayStation Plus will receive 30 days free service.
  • Music Unlimited powered by Qriocity subscribers (in countries where the service is available) will receive 30 days free service.


We’ll have more news as Sony make it available in the coming days and weeks.

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Ishaan Sahdev
Ishaan specializes in game design/sales analysis. He's the former managing editor of Siliconera and wrote the book "The Legend of Zelda - A Complete Development History". He also used to moonlight as a professional manga editor. These days, his day job has nothing to do with games, but the two inform each other nonetheless.