Sony has restored its PlayStation online gaming, chat service and music downloads services in Europe and the US following attacks from hackers. The company said the partial restoration of services, first pledged for May 1, would be extended to Asia â€œsoonâ€.
The Tokyo-based maker of PlayStation game consoles suspended the services on April 20 after the attack by hackers led to a breach of data on more than 100m users, the second-biggest online theft of personal information.
Sony said it had boosted security for PlayStation Network and its Qriocity service by increasing the number of firewalls between servers and adding software to monitor intrusions and system vulnerabilities.
The first phase of restored services will include:
â€¢ Sign-in for PlayStation Network and Qriocity services, including the resetting
â€¢ Restoration of online game-play across PS3 and PSP
â€¢ Playback rental video content, if within rental period, of PlayStation Network
â€¢ Music Unlimited powered by Qriocity, for current subscribers, on PS3 and PC
â€¢ Access to 3rd party services such as Netflix, Hulu, Vudu and MLB.tv
â€¢ â€˜Friendsâ€™ category on PS3, including Friends List, Chat Functionality, Trophy
â€¢ PlayStation Home
The company has also appointed Fumiaki Sakai to the newly created post of chief information security officer.
After the attack:
PlayStation Network Update 3.61 is out
Online gaming, PlayStation Home and third-party apps back online in most territories
PlayStation Store will be back â€œas soon as possibleâ€
Firmware update and password change needed to get back online on PSN SOE games and forums reinstated
Sony has restored most of PSNâ€™s services for most areas of the world. Youâ€™ll need to download update 3.61 and reset your password and then online gaming and PlayStation Home are back online, with many third-party services also working.
The PlayStation Store is still down, however, and weâ€™re still waiting for the full details on the â€˜Welcome Backâ€™ pack beyond two free PS3 games.
Sony Online Entertainment games and forums are also back up and running, with a password change needed to get it working.
In a video address Kazuo Hirai, president of Sonyâ€™s computer entertainment division, laid out the changes being made to the PlayStation Network following the hack that lead to 77m PSN accounts being stolen and a further 24m SOE user details.
Hirai said Sony had taken â€œaggressive actionâ€ to address the issues. â€œWe have greatly updated our security systems,â€ he said, laying out four main areas:
Advanced security protection
Increased levels of encryption
Early warning systems
â€œWhat this means for youâ€¦ is greater protection of the information you have entrusted to us,â€ Hirai added.
However it looks like the pain for gamers who have signed up to online services isnâ€™t going to end. Square Enix have confirmed that 25,000 emails and CVs were hacked into in an attack on the official Eidos website and the portal for Action RPG game Deus Ex: Human Revolution.