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Dennis Durkin  (Source: bloomberg.com)
Microsoft says it isn't taking advantage of Sony's poor position, but is doing everything it can to up its security

Internet security has become one of the largest web-related concerns now that 2011 has been riddled with major corporate and government hacks. Since January 4, hacker groups like LulzSec (Lulz Security), Anonymous and Goatse Security have attacked Gmail accounts, Bank of America, Lockheed Martin Corp., and government sectors in the United States, Tunisia, the United Kingdom and Spain. 

The gaming community was not safe, either. On April 20, Sony's largest international databases -- the PlayStation Network (PSN) and the Sony Online Entertainment (SOE) databases -- went offline due to a massive security breach that compromised the personal information of millions of users. Sony announced the breach on April 26, and admitted that millions of customers' credit card numbers were stolen and put up for sale on the internet as well. This led to several PS3 returns around the world in exchange for Xbox 360's. 

Even though Sony has fully restored PSN worldwide, the entire experience has made some gamers uneasy about sharing their personal information again. According to Dennis Durkin, COO and CFO of Microsoft's Interactive Entertainment Business (IEB), what happened to Sony's PSN was tragic, and even though the situation spurred PS3 returns for Xbox 360's, Microsoft did not look at the experience as a way of obtaining personal gain.

"It's bad for the industry that this has happened to Sony," said Durkin in an interview with IndustryGamers. "It's very damaging. So we don't wish that upon anybody and you've seen we've been actually pretty quiet on the subject because we don't want to appear to even be looking to be taking advantage of somebody else's situation like that. That's just not in our DNA."

While Microsoft sympathizes with Sony's position, it also wants to let Xbox Live users and Microsoft users in general know that the company is doing all it can to protect user's security

"Over time, all of the bets Microsoft is making are about cloud bets," said Durkin. "We want customers to feel confident about the quality of service they're getting, the reliability they're getting, the security of the data that they have and the security of the private information that they have. As a company, you can look back eight, nine years ago, when Bill Gates wrote his Trustworthy Computing Memo that basically said, 'We need to change the way we architect our products and it has to be designed into the way we architect our products and services.' So it's in our DNA, across the company. This is not just an IEB thing."

Durkin also warned that customers need to learn from the PSN experience and take preventative measures to insure their security as well, such as monitoring passwords and making sure they're different across all websites.

The bottom line for Microsoft, of course, is that it's working to keep its online services like Xbox Live safe for users, and that Sony's recent mishaps shouldn't prevent the gaming community from doing what they love: game.

"[Xbox Live] is obviously very important to our consumers," said Durkin. "It's part of the value proposition of why consumers buy our gaming consoles.”



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RE: Interesting
By Pirks on 6/23/2011 12:07:18 PM , Rating: 4
It'd be more interesting and waaaay waaayyyy more entertaining to see iCloud hacked, imagine Jobs's face telling ppl "uh we "just work", we "don't have viruses" and Tony Swash says "99.99% malware is for Windows"... BUT... uh... err..." ...

...well that'd be lotsa lulz for sure :))) Much more lulz than if MS were hacked. But I'm pretty sure Apple security team is top notch and those LulzClowns won't be able to touch it. They are good only for taking down sites whose admins are total morons, but this is not the case for Apple for sure. Hopefully for MS too.


RE: Interesting
By Mitch101 on 6/23/2011 12:14:15 PM , Rating: 2
They would bury it with a comment and wave of the hand that the internet couldn't handle the traffic due to popularity. Now go an rethink your life and buy the new mac book.


RE: Interesting
By therealnickdanger on 6/23/2011 2:40:07 PM , Rating: 3
A tip to the wise:

If you have your Xbox Live Gamertag tied to your Hotmail account, you should know that a breach of your Hotmail account may result in your GT being suspended as well. If someone gains control of your Hotmail, they can change your passwords, making recovery impossible. The way Microsoft deals with it is to lock down everything, including your GT, thus cutting off any possibility of reclamation. Hotmail itself has non-existent support.

Use a non-Microsoft e-mail account as your passport just in case. That way, if your e-mail gets hacked, you won't lose your GT. It recently happened to my friend and after hours on the phone with Xbox support, there was nothing they could do to help her except give her a new Gamertag, losing all achievements and settings.

Also, use 10+ digit passwords, mixing alphas, numbers, and special characters, when possible.


RE: Interesting
By fredgiblet on 6/23/2011 3:55:42 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
The way Microsoft deals with it is to lock down everything, including your GT


And then investigating the stolen account and returning it to you. Not saying it's a bad idea to use a non-MS e-mail, but you don't have to resort to lies to make a good argument for that.


RE: Interesting
By SlyNine on 6/24/2011 4:00:57 PM , Rating: 2
I had my hotmail account locked down once. They then returned it back to normal after awhile. No big deal.


RE: Interesting
By SlyNine on 6/24/2011 4:01:24 PM , Rating: 2
I had to respond to them first though.


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