Sony PlayStation President Apologizes for PSN Outage, Promises Service Back This Week

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The first big step of Sony winning back the goodwill of consumers and repairing its reputation took place this weekend, when Kaz Hirai and other Sony execs took to the stage for a press conference. Hirai, an Executive Vice President who’s the no. 2 man at the Japanese tech giant, made the first executive acknowledgement of the fiasco more than a week after it started. (More on Sony Says PSN Credit Cards Encrypted, Not Personal Data)

Venturebeat quotes Hirai as saying:

“This criminal act against our network had a significant impact not only on our consumers, but our entire industry. These illegal attacks obviously highlight the widespread problem with cyber-security.  We take the security of our consumers’ information very seriously and are committed to helping our consumers protect their personal data.  In addition, the organization has worked around the clock to bring these services back online, and are doing so only after we had verified increased levels of security across our networks.”

Meanwhile, the official PlayStation blog follows up on Hirai’s comments, saying that a phased rollout starting this week will be bringing functionality back to PSN. Here’s what’s going to be coming back, as well as details on the new security measures that they hope will prevent events like this from happening again:

  • Restoration of Online game-play across the PlayStation®3 (PS3) and PSP® (PlayStation®Portable) systems
    -This includes titles requiring online verification and downloaded games
  • Access to Music Unlimited powered by Qriocity for PS3/PSP for existing subscribers
  • Access to account management and password reset
  • Access to download un-expired Movie Rentals on PS3, PSP and MediaGo
  • PlayStation®Home
  • Friends List
  • Chat Functionality
  • Added automated software monitoring and configuration management to help defend against new attacks
  • Enhanced levels of data protection and encryption
  • Enhanced ability to detect software intrusions within the network, unauthorized access and unusual activity patterns
  • Implementation of additional firewalls

Finally, the PlayStation powers-that-be will also be launching a Welcome Back program with freebies for PSN users. If you already pay for the PlayStation Plus premium service or the Music Unlimited/Qriocity offering, you’ll be getting 30 days free. And every major region will be getting free, yet-to-named PlayStation entertainment content, though it remains to be seen whether this will be games, movies or a combination of all the various content types on PSN.

Freebies aside, there’s still at least one class-action lawsuit to contend with. More than that, PlayStation loyalists and outside observers everywhere will surely be looking at how long the stability of the relaunched PSN will last moving forward.