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The Japanese government won't let Sony restart its online services as it's unsure if the company is doing enough to protect Japanese consumers. The PlayStation Network was recently restored in the U.S., Europe, Canada, and other locations.  (Source: RuliWeb.com)
Government says it won't authorize reboot unless Sony shows what precisely it's doing to protect customers

Citizens across Japan, Europe, and America fell victim to a massive breach of privacy thanks to lax security at Sony Corp. (6758).  As many as 101 million individuals are thought to have lost personal information including hashed (but not salted) passwords, plaintext usernames, addresses, and birth dates.  It is unclear whether Sony also lost tens of millions of other customers’ credit card information.

For American, Canadian, and European customers the PlayStation Network (PSN) is now back online after being shutdown for over three weeks while Sony tried to assess the extent of the damage and secure its systems.

But in Japan the network is still down and may remain so for some time.  The Japanese government has refused to let Sony restart the network without providing more explicit proof that it is securing the network.

Kazushige Nobutani, the director of the Media and Content Industry department at the Japanese Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry, comments, "We met with Sony on May 6 and 13, and basically we want two things from them. The first is preventative measures. As of May 13, Sony was incomplete in exercising measures that they said they will do on the May 1 press conference."

The second key point was that the Japanese government is demanding Sony address what steps it’s taking to protect customers whose credit card data may have been stolen.  Sony Japan has been less specific about what measures it has been taking, as opposed to Sony Computer Entertainment America LLC , which announced that it would be providing customers with a year of free identity theft coverage.

The PlayStation Network is currently back online in Americas, Europe, Australia, New Zealand, and the Middle East, though it remains down in Japan and some other locations (such as China and South Korea).

Sony is also working to restore its Sony Online Entertainment (SOE) service, which was also compromised as part of the breach.  SOE offers services for certain streaming music and video offerings and also supports online games like DC Universe.

The company is currently struggling to clear the cloud of negative publicity.  It is currently facing several high profile class action lawsuits internationally, in addition to multiple government inquiries.  Customers have reportedly also been returning their PS3s and trying to trade-in their consoles for cash towards purchasing Xbox 360s.

No charges have yet been filed against those involved in the data breach.  Sony claims the online hacker collective Anonymous might have been involved, but the majority of members of the collective rebuked this claim.  Sony has presented no evidence indicating that it's figured out exactly who was involved.



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RE: gov't protecting its citizens
By JasonMick (blog) on 5/16/2011 1:47:12 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Wonder what it is like to live in a country where the gov't protects its citizens instead of the U.S. where the gov't protects the corporations.


I don't agree with the taxpayer funded handouts the U.S. gov't gives to corporations, but I also disagree with the gov't interfering with their day-to-day business.

So while I agree with the latter half of your statement, I disagree with the former -- Japan here is arguably jumping the gun a bit.

At the end of the day the gov't job is not to dictate the way its nation's corporation do business unless they are behaving criminally or creating a gross national security risk.

It's also not the job of the gov't to artificially inflate the profits of corporations. (Don't get me started on the whole "America has the world's highest corporate tax rate" argument... many major U.S. corp.s turned large profits last year and paid zero taxes -- or even got returns....)

The gov't's job, imho, is to merely protect national security and make sure that corporations don't merge/collude together to the point where they stomp out free competition.

Seems like systems tend to the extremes of over-regulation or under-regulation, though...


RE: gov't protecting its citizens
By nolisi on 5/16/2011 2:27:45 PM , Rating: 4
quote:
Seems like systems tend to the extremes of over-regulation or under-regulation, though...


I think we might be failing to look at things from a wider perspective...

We assume that the government is hindering Sony and "protecting" consumers by preventing them from reinstating their service. Why is this not also seen as the Japanese government stepping in to protect Sony as well? By double checking Sony and asking for disclosure, the government is helping to protect what's left of Sony's tarnished reputation, and even bolstering it by backing them up when they provide evidence that enhance security has been implemented. If the Japanese government steps in and qualifies Sony's response to the public, that will help to reinstate trust in Sony as a brand, meanwhile validating the substantial investment in Sony's product.

I have Rock Band for PS- I've made a substantial investment in peripherals, expansion and tracks that I have purchased over the years that I can't transfer over to Xbox. And I still purchase new tracks, and updates are regularly made to add features, fix bugs, etc. As a consumer, I'm torn between making a reinvestment to migrate to what I percieve is a more secure system to recieve updates/expansion packs, or cutting myself off because of perception of insecurity and mismanagement by Sony. Government validation of the improved security reassures me as a consumer and gives me more confidence in trusting Sony with my data.

Further, take a look at the last few months for Japan- Sony is a Japanese company, and only a few months ago, because of corporate mismanagement of a Japanese nuclear plant, Japan is now suffering from a partial meltdown, and the nuclear industry has suffered a massive political setback. These events combined damages world perception of the Japanese making superior products.

By increasing accountability (which is reasonable and different from regulation) and providing the positive perception of government certification, Japan is not only protecting consumers, but helping Japanese businesses and safeguarding its already fragile economy.


RE: gov't protecting its citizens
By nolisi on 5/16/2011 2:37:42 PM , Rating: 2
By the way, let's not ignore the fact that Sony hindered itself in the first place by not taking the simple steps of implementing stronger security and keeping its servers up to date. This "hinderance" by the Japanese government in an effort to validate Sony's security is minor compared to what Sony effectively did to themselves by alienating the hacker community while leaving dated software in place. The extra validation of Sony's security benefits Sony, consumers, and Japan, while taking the time to validate hurts Sony in a minimal way compared to what they have already done to themselves.


RE: gov't protecting its citizens
By phantom505 on 5/16/2011 3:01:25 PM , Rating: 4
Yeah because laissez faire worked out so well last time we tried it. Since you obviously are clueless about the time frame we tried this read history from 1890 to about 1920. That'll narrow it down a bit.

Corporations are psychopathic by design. We wouldn't give individual psychopaths the rights we give corporations, hence the problem. Only one thing matters to a corporation: profit. They care nothing about individuals, environment, countries, humanity, morality. That's why you have governments. No one person can police every single consumer product. Nobody can be smart enough or have time enough or wants to live paranoid enough to live the society you suggest. This is the fallacy of Libertarianism. The idea you can be all-knowing, all-paranoid, all-aware of everything that might try to kill, harm, or rob you. Corporations WILL NOT think twice before doing any of this.

Read a few history books and quit channeling Glen Beck and Lou Dobbs straight to your brain.


By JasonMick (blog) on 5/16/2011 4:32:01 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Yeah because laissez faire worked out so well last time we tried it. Since you obviously are clueless about the time frame we tried this read history from 1890 to about 1920. That'll narrow it down a bit.

*AHEM*
quote:
The gov't's job, imho, is to merely protect national security and make sure that corporations don't merge/collude together to the point where they stomp out free competition.

What about that sounds like laissez faire?

Of course I understand that unfettered corporations could develop into a ruling entity, or at the very least an anti-competitive entity that left consumers with high costs and no choice.

Competition is the key.

quote:
Corporations are psychopathic by design. We wouldn't give individual psychopaths the rights we give corporations, hence the problem. Only one thing matters to a corporation: profit. They care nothing about individuals, environment, countries, humanity, morality. That's why you have governments. No one person can police every single consumer product. Nobody can be smart enough or have time enough or wants to live paranoid enough to live the society you suggest. This is the fallacy of Libertarianism. The idea you can be all-knowing, all-paranoid, all-aware of everything that might try to kill, harm, or rob you. Corporations WILL NOT think twice before doing any of this.


Corporations are profit driven. They're only as "psychopathic" as you let them be.

If you practice weak controls you're going to get screwed over. The U.S. is going to learn this first hand if the T-Mobile/AT&T merger (which I oppose, personally) is approved.

That said, there's nothing inherently wrong with Corporations/plcs/AGs/etc. if they're carefully prevented from behaving anti-competitively and are prevented from merging together into a single monopolistic entity.

quote:
Read a few history books and quit channeling Glen Beck and Lou Dobbs straight to your brain.


HA! That's a laugh. I find Glenn Beck horrible. Anyone who listens to the majority of his rants is mentally vacant.

My political opinions are my own and formed from much debate and logical thinking. They don't fit neatly in the box of any would-be commentator, and I'm proud of that. I'm a free thinker.

Sadly neither of the major American political parties fits my philosophy well...

....

Overall, I would say that you're right in some regards, but that you're a bit overly paranoid and that you need to consider directing your scrutiny more at specific problems versus considering the whole system somehow unworkable...

I don't think you fully understood my views (based on your comments). I'd prefer you ask before attacking me without a factual basis....


RE: gov't protecting its citizens
By Yames on 5/16/2011 5:52:57 PM , Rating: 2
Here is a perfect example, recently brought to the attention of many. This one is a bit different as the company is public sector, but the point still remains.

http://www.khaleejtimes.com/DisplayArticleNew.asp?...


"I'd be pissed too, but you didn't have to go all Minority Report on his ass!" -- Jon Stewart on police raiding Gizmodo editor Jason Chen's home














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