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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 erple2 on 5/16/2011 6:01:52 PM , Rating: 3
Sadly, yes. Unless there are existing laws that force a corporation to protect (via hashing, encrypting, whatever) your personal information, then yes, I'm fine with it. Note that there are rules governing how information related to credit cards can and can't be stored (encryption, access controls, etc), but we're not necessarily talking about that right now.

The corporation can choose to not encrypt anything you supply to them (with the exception of things that they're required to encrypt). They can choose to have everything open to the intartubes. I can also choose to not do business with that company. It's a terrible case of buyer beware. While it makes good business sense to encrypt/restrict access to that kind of information, and there are TONS of simple ways to do that, I don't believe that there are any laws that govern that (at least, in the USA).

The Government, on the other hand, has different restrictions on what it must do. By law, the Government has to safeguard your personal information by "reasonable" means. That's primarily because I, as a citizen, can't choose to not do business with the government.


By snakeInTheGrass on 5/16/2011 7:58:08 PM , Rating: 2
Why should your credit card information be protected by any laws? Wouldn't everyone be happier if your SSN, credit cards - everything! - wasn't restricted by an overly large government? Why regulate any company for anything, for that matter? Surely capitalism will protect us all?


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