Sony CEO Adamantly Defends Openness On PSN Attack

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Sony’s Howard Stringer snaps back at critics that think the company didn’t reveal information about its hacked servers quickly enough.

For more than 3 weeks starting on April 20, Sony was forced to bring the PlayStation Network down (and later Sony Online Entertainment MMOs) due to an external intrusion that may have leaked customer information. The company has been taking a lot of heat for not mentioning that this data may have been stolen until around a week later, but president and CEO Howard Stringer is having none of it.

Speaking to reporters, Stringer was unapologetic about the timeframe Sony followed in regards to the hacking incident. “This was an unprecedented situation,” he said. “Most of these breaches go unreported by companies.”

“Forty-three percent notify victims within a month,” he added. “We reported in a week. You’re telling me my week wasn’t fast enough?”

In an interview with the New York Times, Stringer said Sony “reported quickly,” and added that the company made security a company-wide focus from “televisions to e-books, and onwards.” He revealed that Sony is still in the process of investigating how the attack took place and who may have been responsible.

Sony previously explained that it informed customers of the server breach as soon as it confirmed the scope of the intrusion. After all, there’s no saying “just kidding” once you reveal to millions of customers that their personal information may have been stolen. It’ll be offering free credit monitoring and free games to make up for the trouble.

I hate to side with the corporation here, but a week doesn’t sound like that long a period of time to investigate a server attack and notify customers of its potential (correct me if I’m wrong). In Sony’s defense, it could have kept going the “technical difficulties” route but was fairly upfront and honest about what’s been going on through this whole process. Sony very well may have been negligent in its security methods, sure, but it was also a victim here to some extent.

The PlayStation Network is now back up and running, though the PlayStation Store still has yet to return.

Source: Reuters, New York Times

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