Hackers swiped PlayStation Network user data: Sony (Update 2)

Apr 26, 2011
Sony on Tuesday warned that hackers stole password, birthday and other data about users of its PlayStation Network that connected PlayStation 3 (PS3) consoles to online games, films and more.

Sony is warning that hackers stole password, birthday and other data about users of its PlayStation Network that connected PlayStation 3 (PS3) consoles to online games, films and more.

PlayStation Network and Qriocity streaming music service were turned off April 20 in the wake of an "external intrusion," according to Sony spokesman Patrick Seybold.

While the cyber attack was still being investigated, Sony said it believed that PlayStation Network and Qriocity service users' names, addresses, birthdates, passwords, and email addresses were swiped.

"While there is no evidence at this time that credit card data was taken, we cannot rule out the possibility," Sony said in an email message being sent out to PlayStation Network and Qriocity users.

"It is also possible that your profile data, including purchase history and billing address (city, state, zip), and your PlayStation Network/Qriocity password security answers may have been obtained."

Sony shut off PlayStation Network and Qriocity to investigate the breach and bolster defenses.

"We have a clear path to have PlayStation Network and Qriocity systems back online, and expect to restore some services within a week," Seybold said Tuesday.

Players were still able to take part in games offline on consoles, but lost the ability to challenge others on the Internet, stream movies, or get other services.

PlayStation Network launched in November of 2006 and boasts about 75 million registered users worldwide.

Sony did not indicate whether it identified a culprit in the intrusion.

Internet vigilante group Anonymous had vowed retribution against Sony for taking legal action against hackers who cracked PS3 defenses to change console operating software.

Anonymous argued that PS3 console owners have the right to do what they wish with them, including modifying them.

Wedbush Morgan videogame industry analyst Michael Pachter suspected that Sony was hacked by a gamer more interested in showing off than ripping off PlayStation Network users.

"My guess is the person who hacked the network did it because they could," Pachter told AFP.

"Sony is a target because gamers tend to be more software sophisticated," he continued. "If you are a real cyber criminal trying to profit, you go where the money is, not PlayStation Network where the average user is a teenager."

If Sony gets the Network back up promptly with hardened defenses, users are likely to forgive, according to the analyst. Sony was expected also to atone with free downloadable content and services.

"If it never happens again, I think it is over in two months and everybody forgets about it," Pachter said. "If it is an evil guy trying to steal, Sony is going to have a nightmare. You just don't know right now."

Senator Richard Blumenthal from the state of Connecticut sent Sony Computer Entertainment America chief executive Jack Tretton a letter scolding the company for not alerting PlayStation Network users more quickly.

Blumenthal called on Sony to provide PlayStation Network users with credit tracking services to protect them from identity theft and insurance to cover losses incurred if stolen data is misused.

"I feel bad for Sony," said Pachter, a PlayStation Network user. "I don't think they did anything wrong."

Explore further: Privacy groups take 2nd hit on license plate data

More information: http://blog.us.playstation.com/2011/04/26/update-on-playstation-network-and-qriocity

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User comments : 12

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Silver_the_Fox
1 / 5 (2) Apr 26, 2011
Well, the ages old question of which is better, has finally been answered.

Which is better, the PS3, or the Xbox 360?

And we have a winner, post your answer below.
Moebius
2.1 / 5 (7) Apr 26, 2011
So who were the morons here hammering me for advocating that all hackers should be put away forever?
knowitall599
1 / 5 (1) Apr 26, 2011
As far as hardware goes PS3, but as far as being developer friendly and user friendly, Xbox 360 FTW!
neophyte12
not rated yet Apr 26, 2011
"Anonymous argued that PS3 console owners have the right to do what they wish with them, including modifying them."

...Except play games or watch videos online apparently...
PTK
not rated yet Apr 27, 2011
these hackers have done the wrong thing!! And i don't defend them since they now have all my details too & i'm not happy.
But.. they are taking a swipe at sony for a list of unjustifiable behavior to their customers, namely removal of other os feature that geohot was tring to reimpliment.. i believe this is just a delayed rebuttal & if sony had respected their customers purchase & ownership rights earlier, this may never have happened!!
PTK
not rated yet Apr 27, 2011
that said it could just be normal corruption but sony could have been working with hackers to secure their system if they hadn't annoyed them all
Moebius
2.3 / 5 (4) Apr 27, 2011
Yes, they have personal info and possibly credit card info from me and 70 million other people. And yet some moron votes my post down which in essence is a vote for the criminal hackers.

Oh wait it isn't just some moron it's a particular moron, FrankHerbert, who, like geokstr (one and the same?) votes all my posts a 1. For a second there I thought it was actually someone who was on the hackers side instead of a moron with a personal vendetta. Keep it up Frankherbert and geokstr, you just prove how stupid you are with every vote.
J-n
3.7 / 5 (3) Apr 27, 2011
So who were the morons here hammering me for advocating that all hackers should be put away forever?

...
And yet some moron votes my post down which in essence is a vote for the criminal hackers.


What you are saying is equivalent to saying that the bank who kept all their money in a cardboard box in the unlocked, unguarded lobby of their bank overnight has no blame while those who took the cash should be locked up forever.

With all the flack that sony was getting over their suing over alternative OS usage, and what not, i wonder if this is in reality just a way to solidify their base against those who modify their personal property.

You see, if Sony was a smart company they would have setup the security such that someone could not access this sort of information from the outside. For some reason, though Sony decided to leave their box of cash outside and made this incident possible.

So while yes those that took your info are wrong for doing it but Sony is to blame
Silver_the_Fox
not rated yet Apr 27, 2011
Ding Ding Ding!
Time's up, the votes are in, and the results are:

Sony was an idiot: 4
Xbox 360: 1
PS3: 1
Random comment on the voting on comments (of which wasn't included): 1

Final tally: Sony needs to up its software and install a better firewall, one without a back door...
Moebius
1 / 5 (1) Apr 27, 2011
J-n, so you are saying it's ok to steal from someone if they haven't guarded their stuff well? Finders keepers, losers weepers? You really don't know how very wrong you are?

What you are saying is equivalent to saying that the bank who kept all their money in a cardboard box in the unlocked, unguarded lobby of their bank overnight has no blame while those who took the cash should be locked up forever.

That's exactly what I'm saying. What are you saying, steal what ever you can get away with? You realize that you have a criminal mentality?
J-n
5 / 5 (1) Apr 28, 2011
J-n, so you are saying it's ok to steal from someone if they haven't guarded their stuff well? Finders keepers, losers weepers? You really don't know how very wrong you are?


If you actually read what i said, i said "No Blame". Yes the thieves are to blame and should be appropriately punished. In my opinion that when it comes to personal data, if the company leaves their door open they should be punished as well!

I NEVER said the thieves should not be punished. I said that suggesting that Sony bears no responsibility in this is just crazy, and setting up a situation where this information will be taken again.

Blame in this case SHOULD be shared among the two parties.
J-n
5 / 5 (1) Apr 28, 2011

That's exactly what I'm saying. What are you saying, steal what ever you can get away with? You realize that you have a criminal mentality?


So you're saying is that Sony is blameless in all of this? They shouldn't change their practices, and should just leave their customers personal data easily available for anyone with a few years computer experience to steal?

What you are saying, it seems to me, is that companies should hold no responsibility when they leave your credit card information in an easily accessible location. They should be held blameless when they are lazy, and should continue to leave information available, at least until someone steals it.. THEN they should change things up, if they feel like it.

You have advocated extreme punishment for a crime, while holding the other half of this crime unaccountable for their part, which is in fact significant.

Tell me one good reason that Sony should keep YOUR data in such an accessible spot for people easily take?