Sony CEO Apologises To Customers Over PSN Attack

Howard Stringer, the man at the very top of Sony, has released an open letter to customers today, joining PlayStation boss Kaz Hirai in officially apologising for the "inconvenience and concern" caused by an attack on the company's PlayStation Network.

Stringer goes on to further detail the delay in notifying PlayStation Network and Qriocity customers of the potential exposure of their personal details, again chalking up the nearly week-long delay in communication to required "forensic analysis".

"I know some believe we should have notified our customers earlier than we did," Stringer writes. "It's a fair question. As soon as we discovered the potential scope of the intrusion, we shut down the PlayStation Network and Qriocity services and hired some of the best technical experts in the field to determine what happened. I wish we could have gotten the answers we needed sooner, but forensic analysis is a complex, time-consuming process. Hackers, after all, do their best to cover their tracks, and it took some time for our experts to find those tracks and begin to identify what personal information had - or had not - been taken."

Stringer says that Sony's revamped, upgraded security will be "even stronger" should another attempt on its network services occur.

"In the coming days," he says "we will restore service to the networks and welcome you back to the fun."

His full letter is copied below.

Dear Friends, I know this has been a frustrating time for all of you.

Let me assure you that the resources of this company have been focused on investigating the entire nature and impact of the cyber-attack we've all experienced and on fixing it. We are absolutely dedicated to restoring full and safe service as soon as possible and rewarding you for your patience. We will settle for nothing less.

To date, there is no confirmed evidence any credit card or personal information has been misused, and we continue to monitor the situation closely. We are also moving ahead with plans to help protect our customers from identity theft around the world. A program for U.S. PlayStation Network and Qriocity customers that includes a $US1 million identity theft insurance policy per user was launched earlier today and announcements for other regions will be coming soon.

As we have announced, we will be offering a "Welcome Back" package to our customers once our PlayStation Network and Qriocity services are up and running. This will include, among other benefits, a month of free PlayStation Plus membership for all PSN customers, as well as an extension of subscriptions for PlayStation Plus and Music Unlimited customers to make up for time lost.

As a company we - and I - apologise for the inconvenience and concern caused by this attack. Under the leadership of Kazuo Hirai, we have teams working around the clock and around the world to restore your access to those services as quickly, and as safely, as possible.

I know some believe we should have notified our customers earlier than we did. It's a fair question. As soon as we discovered the potential scope of the intrusion, we shut down the PlayStation Network and Qriocity services and hired some of the best technical experts in the field to determine what happened. I wish we could have gotten the answers we needed sooner, but forensic analysis is a complex, time-consuming process. Hackers, after all, do their best to cover their tracks, and it took some time for our experts to find those tracks and begin to identify what personal information had - or had not - been taken.

As a result of what we discovered we notified you of the breach. Our investigation is ongoing, and we are upgrading our security so that if attacks like this happen again, our defenses will be even stronger.

In the last few months, Sony has faced a terrible earthquake and tsunami in Japan. But now we are facing a very man-made event – a criminal attack on us - and on you - and we are working with the FBI and other law enforcement agencies around the world to apprehend those responsible.

In the coming days, we will restore service to the networks and welcome you back to the fun. I wanted to personally reach out and let you know that we are committed to serving you to the very best of our ability, protecting your information better than ever, and getting you back to what you signed up for – all the games and great entertainment experiences that you expect from Sony.

With best regards,

Howard Stringer

A Letter from Howard Stringer [PlayStation.blog]


Comments

    still no solid answer to when it will b back on! Tues. , no wait now wed., oops guess it will b within the week! My prediction is NEXT thur at the earliest!

    sonys best is an idiot.

    how about apologising WHEN ITS BACK UP AND RUNNING. we dont accept apologies yet sony...

      I was just about to say the same thing - "How about less apologizing and more work on restoring the network?"

    You've gotta give credit to Sony. Most companies couldn't have handled this situation any worse even if they tried.

    "Hackers, after all, do their best to cover their tracks, and it took some time for our experts to find those tracks and begin to identify what personal information had – or had not – been taken."

    And yet they left a message on the disks saying "We are Legion"

    Pardon my skepticism but, yeah.... right...

      I just got a call from the 1860s saying they want their cliche's back from Sony.

      Does Sony honestly believe that Anonymous - or any group for that matter - will leave a calling card?

    i still havent got an email from them, only to my fake usa acc

    It's funny how most people seem to overlook that what was done was a criminal act, on not only Sony but them. The only party I am angry at is that which perpetrated said criminal act. I am not confidant it will happen but I hope that they are brought to justice and charged.

    you guys are waaay too harsh, sure they should have been protected better, but they have learned from this mistake. Now if it happens again THEN you can ream them.

    that said I plan to forward any spam from my psn email address to stringer himself :P

      Don't be too harsh on the security guys at your hotel, they only let someone break into the room you paid for and steal your identity once.

      Now, they are promising to have better security staff, so if someone breaks into your hotel room AGAIN and manages to steal your identity, THEN we can get mad.

      One mistake is ok right guys?

        well, in australia, sony said be back up by friday and today IS friday so...

        They better have it back up soon, i made my psn acc 3 weeks ago

        So yea...better not happen again.

        The Drift King, PRESTIGED!

        Except this hotel doesn't ask for a premium rate for security, and you pay one price to stay in the hotel as long as you like.

        You are also, not required to stay if you are not satisfied with the service.

        :)

      I honestly don't think people are being hard enough on Sony. The fact that Sony think this is ok just because credit cards MAY have not been stolen is laughable.

      Remember that they got your full name, personal address, email and birthday. Just imagine the kind of stuff that someone could sign you up for with that information alone? It's a scary thought.

      Hell, in some parts that is enough info to take out a personal loan or rack up some big debts online.

      Sony will never regain my trust.

      No Milali, everyone is being very realistic when it comes to grilling Sony.

      We trusted them to keep our details safe and now we find someone got access to our details and they waited a week for informing us.

      "sure they should have been protected better, but they have learned from this mistake"

      Make, they kept personal details *in the clear*, even high school students know better than this. If it is important, you encrypt it.

      Mistakes like this corporations *should not ever make*.

    What the hell does "coming days " mean, just say that you have no f%@ken idea what your doing down there at Sony and , just tell us to stop hoping that it will be any time soon , i think we are all just a bit sick and tired of this date continually been shifted , at the start you did say 1 or 2 days till the network was back that was 2 weeks ago then it was the first week in May , ahhh but you didn't tell us what year ? ok , It is sometimes better to say nothing than to dribble on about what we already know , come on you guys i am sure someone there knows how long , just tell us , this is all we want a definite date

    if you ask me sony got what they deserved... being the greedy corporation that they are.

    The irony of the situation is, people are complaining about why Sony didn't tell them about the intrusion earlier, but now they're complaining that,

    "Sony said Tuesday, and now it's still not up. They're a bunch of liars!"

    This is why you don't do things without reason, evidence, or proof. It can [email protected]$% with you in a number of unforseen ways.

    i honesty don't think its going to be up for weeks still if it comes back on tomoz i will be very surprised hah doubt it

    Bloody idiots.

    Apologising for the data being stolen, but not for being complete asshats suing the PS3 reverse engineers, which caused the whole thing to happen in the first place.

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