Sony Attempts To Address Concerns Over PSN Breach With FAQ

It’s been quite the busy day for Sony. Still reeling from a week long PlayStation network outage (compounded by having dithered on disclosing why PSN was down), they finally admitted today that millions of members’ information may have been compromised. Their dithering response to this problem led to a scathing public statement by Senator Richard Blumenthal, and many troubling questions about Sony’s behavior and the safety of their members remain.

In an attempt to address the increasing PR nightmare, earlier this afternoon Sony published an official FAQ on the breach, and what it means for their customers, on the official PlayStation blog.

The complete FAQ is as follows:

Q.1 When did you realise the system had been intruded?

We discovered between April 17 and April 19 there was an illegal and unauthorized intrusion into our network.

Q.2 How did you know that the system was intruded?

We watch for any issues that may be raised with respect to security and monitor for such issues both internally and externally.

Q.3 What is the main reason to this problem? Which parts of the system were vulnerable to the intrusion?

We are currently conducting a thorough investigation of the situation. Since this is an overall security related issue, we will not comment further on this case.

Q.4 What action did you take (are you taking)? Is there any possibility of further unauthorized access?

As soon as we learned of this issue, 1) we temporarily turned off PlayStation Network and Qriocity services in order to conduct a thorough investigation and to verify the smooth and secure operation of our network services, 2) we have also engaged an outside, recognized security firm to conduct a full and complete investigation into what happened, and 3) quickly taken steps to enhance security and strengthen our network infrastructure by re-building our system to provide you with greater protection of your personal information.

Q.5 How many were affected? How many per each region? What is the latest status of PlayStation Network registered account/ operating countries.

Our investigation indicates that all PlayStation Network/ Qriocity accounts may have been affected.

Q.6 Does that mean all users’ information was compromised? Tell us more in details of what personal information leaked.

In terms of possibility, yes. We believe that an unauthorized person has obtained the following information that you provided: name, address (city, state/province, zip or postal code), country, email address, birthdate, PlayStation Network/Qriocity password, login, password security answers, and handle/PSN online ID. It is also possible that your profile data may have been obtained, including purchase history and billing address (city, state/province, zip or postal code). If you have authorized a sub-account for your dependent, the same data with respect to your dependent may have been obtained. If you have provided your credit card data through PlayStation Network or Qriocity, it is possible that your credit card number (excluding security code) and expiration date may also have been obtained.

Q.7 Have you notified those users?

We are sending out e-mails directly to these users to their e-mail address registered on the PS Network accounts. Also, we have posted web notices, and additional necessary procedures have been followed by each region.

Q.8 Have you received reports or claims that their PSN ID information/ credit card had been used improperly?

Not at this point in time.

Q.9 I want to know if my account has been affected.

To protect against possible identity theft or other financial loss, we encourage you to remain vigilant to review your account statements and to monitor your credit reports. Additionally, if you use the same user name or password for your PlayStation Network or Qriocity service account for other unrelated services or accounts, we strongly recommend that you change them. When the PlayStation Network and Qriocity services are back on line, we also strongly recommend that you log on to change your password.
For your security, we encourage you to be especially aware of email, telephone, postal mail or other scams that ask for personal or sensitive information. Sony will not contact you in any way, including by email, asking for your credit card number, social security number or other personally identifiable information. If you are asked for this information, you can be confident Sony is not the entity asking.

Q.10 What should I do to prevent any unauthorized use of my (credit card) personal information?

For your security, we encourage you to be especially aware of email, telephone, postal mail or other scams that ask for personal or sensitive information. Sony will not contact you in any way, including by email, asking for your credit card number, social security number or other personally identifiable information. If you are asked for this information, you can be confident Sony is not the entity asking. Additionally, if you use the same user name or password for your PlayStation Network or Qriocity service account for other unrelated services or accounts, we strongly recommend that you change them. When the PlayStation Network and Qriocity services are back on line, we also strongly recommend that you log on to change your password.
To protect against possible identity theft or other financial loss, we encourage you to remain vigilant to review your account statements and to monitor your credit reports.

Q.11 Since when have PSN/Qriocity become unavailable and in which region?

PSN/Qriocity services have not been available since April 20 (US time) in all regions.

Q.12 How come it is taking so much time to resume the service?

We are taking the investigation seriously. We decided to keep the service down to allow us to conduct a thorough investigation and verify smooth operation of our network services.

Q.13 How serious is this? Have the hackers broken the security on PSN/Qriocity? Are you taking necessary measures to prevent such outage happening in the future?

Since this is an overall security related issue, we will not comment further on this case but we are working to restore and maintain the services, including countermeasures against future intrusions.

Q.14 When will the service resume?

We are taking the investigation seriously. We will keep the service down to allow us to conduct a thorough investigation and verify smooth operation of our network services but are working hard to resume the services as soon as we can be reasonably assured security concerns are addressed.

Q.15 Seems like SOE service was also not available/ suffering outage. Is this true? Is this due to the same reason as the PSN/Qriocity outage?

SOE’s service is available although a service interruption due to an external attack did occur. A thorough investigation is ongoing.

Q.16 I want my money back (subscription fee, content) since the PSN/Qriocity was not available.

When the full services are restored and the length of the outage is known, we will assess the correct course of action.

Q.17 There seems to be some games that cannot be played even offline?

Depending on the game titles, but mainly PSN games, some may require access to PSN for trophy sync, security check, etc.

Over on the FAQ post, they’ve provided region-by-region customer support contact information. Check that list to determine whom you should call with further questions. In the meantime, we at GameFront would add that whatever action you ultimately take regarding your PSN membership, you should immediately change your PSN password as soon as the network is available.

We will keep you posted if any member of the GameFront staff receives the notification referred to in this FAQ, and of course, any further developments associated with this problem.

Via VG247.

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