Sony says 'welcome back' to PlayStation Network users with free month of PlayStation Plus

Sony says 'welcome back' to PlayStation Network users with free month of PlayStation Plus

Summary: In an attempt to restore the faith of its 77 million customers, Sony has announced a set of freebies, including free PlayStation Plus access and entertainment content.

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The recent, massive security breach of Sony's PlayStation Network and Qriocity services likely didn't make the company any friends (and certainly cost it a few customers.) But Sony is trying to make good with the 77 million registered users of its services, announcing at a press conference this weekend its worldwide "Welcome Back" program.

Under the program, Sony will give current PlayStation Network users a free month of PlayStation Plus, the enhanced version of PlayStation Network. Sony currently prices the service at $49 a year, and $17 for three months.

Sony will also make certain PlayStation entertainment content free to users, though said specific plans would vary by region.

Set for this week, Sony says that the restoration of its PlayStation Network and Qriocity services will come with significantly improved server security, lest a similar attack befall the services again. As a part of improvements, Sony will force customers to upgrade their PlayStation consoles to a new firmware version. Customers will also be obliged to change their passwords, a sensical move considering that that their current passwords are likely in the hands of eager evil-doers.

Fortunately, Sony is repeating its claim that customer credit card information wasn't stolen, but the company recommends that users monitor their credit card accounts anyway.

Topics: Mobility, Hardware, Networking

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18 comments
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  • RE: Sony Says

    $17 for three months, which makes it like what... Little bit more than 6 bucks for losing my personal information?

    Thanks alot, Sony!
    Samic
    • RE: Sony Says

      @Samic little less actually 3x6=18
      Greenman76
  • RE: Sony Says

    Hmm, I don't have a ps3 (for which the past few weeks I've been internally grateful because it's not like I've never considered buying one) but one thing springs to mind here, I'm sure one of the last uproars about the ps3 came when they removed the "install another OS" option... Wasn't that meant to be for security? Sounds pretty rich now that it's become clear that the playstation network security was so poor. <br><br>Now fingers crossed that Xbox live is better secured! And that if it does get hacked that I get more than a months free membership or some avatar gear.
    Big_Belly_Bob
    • Sony got hacked because of Windows.

      @Big_Belly_Bob ...

      <i>"Sony got a bad luck again after the PS3 hack. Sony Corporations online data of PlayStation Gamers just got stolen. It included the theft of 77 million user accounts that consisted of their names, addresses and credit card data. Due to this Sony has shut down its all servers. Reports say that this theft took place 7 days ago by an illegal and unauthorized person. Sony immediately shut down all its networks thus preventing the players to play online and even the online purchases. This theft is said to be the biggest internet security break-ins ever. Sony claimed that there is only a small probability of credit cards of users are being stolen but it could not promise it. The data stolen is estimated of worth about $5oo millions. Alan Pailer, the research director of SANS institute said that they didnt pay enough attention to the security system of the servers as they were more focused on the innovation of the new products. This could be a major reason for this security break-in. <b>Pailer suspected that Hackers succeeded to break-in security system by taking over the PC of a system administrator who had the rights to access the information about Sonys customers. He also claimed that they hacked into the administrators system by sending an email that contained malware.</i> Reports also say that the same group of hackers hacked into the systems of other major corporations. To all its online buyers, Sony suggested to place fraud alerts on their credit cards accounts through three U.S credit card bureaus. Sony said it could restore some of the networks services within a week."</b><br><br><a href="http://www.techextant.com/sony-playstation-data-break/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow"><a href="http://www.techextant.com/sony-playstation-data-break/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow"><a href="http://www.techextant.com/sony-playstation-data-break/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">http://www.techextant.com/sony-playstation-data-break/</a></a></a>
      Joe.Smetona
      • RE: Sony Says

        @Joe.Smetona

        And who forced them to use Windows instead of Linux? And just because you use Windows it doesn't automatically follow that you'll get hacked, that's like saying macs don't get viruses, it's down to Sony to encrypt and secure data, to train staff and screen emails that contain malware. I accept that there is only so much you can do but I don't believe Sony did a good job protecting the data, for example why will it be nessacery for you to change your password? They should have been stored using a oneway salted hash, if it was then you wouldn't be able to steal the password, only the hash.

        If you were talking more about installing another OS on the playstation itself then personally I think that should be a choice for the user, the fact that they had poor security on their windows PCs doesn't mean that the decision to remove the "install other OS" option from the ps3 was correct or in any way made it more secure.
        Big_Belly_Bob
      • RE: Sony Says

        Why would Sony think any of their Windows boxes cold be hacked? This is totally Sony's fault. If you cut yourself using a sharp knife its your fault, you knew it was dangerous when you picked it up so you should have taken precautions.
        john_gillespie@...
    • RE: Sony Says

      @Big_Belly_Bob I guess that people who buy a game for 70 bux then pay monthly to play need to think about the cons a bit more. I would actually believe that the developers are seperated from PSN. So these accounts are probably not to worry.

      Here is how I look at this. Your PC is in danger just having it on, and attached to the internet. Whats teh Difference? PC can wait for you to connect, hijack you in email, and you never know about it. OS manufactures just say to bad for you, and Email portals do the same. Are you gonna stop using your Computer online? All Computer companies say is so sad, next time goto the store and cry to them, right?

      This sounds like an sad attempt to justify what happened, and it isn't, but it is a reality. You buy things in any virtual world you must expect that something can happen. Shoot on PC it can happen in real time and never be caught because your connection was interrupted. and if can be months and or years before you even have a hint of it!!
      Ez_Customs
  • RE: Sony Says

    Free Playstation Plus for a month. That is a joke. What you get free from a plus membership can only be used provided you are still a plus member. Unless you have had your eye on a game that a plus membership gives you a small discount on, this is totally worthless.
    MiddleTommy
    • RE: Sony Says

      @MiddleTommy

      I agree completely. Sounds more like an advertising come-on then any sort of compensation.
      raelalt
  • The real bottom line...

    ...is that Sony should never have collected so much personal information in the first place.

    After all, if you don't collect it, you can't have it stolen from you, RIGHT?

    Sony is a bad actor. Rootkits, now an open door for hackers? They collect a huge amount of personal information that's just perfect for identity theft.

    Why?

    They won't say. Of course it's for selling to ad agencies, but they dare not say that.

    Litigious, security-deprived and lacking any common sense. And you want to do business with this company why?
    wolf_z
  • $6 for a working credit card number... sounds like a bargain. [nt]

    [nt]
    olePigeon
  • Im a Playstation member

    I wish I had never become one its Playstation + is worthless and Sony giving away a months worth of it is a slap in the face. What they need to do is recompense me for the time I've spent covering my ass for their mistakes to the tune of about $2000. Then all the Sony execs need to fall on their swords and or commit seppuku. I used to love Sony and Sony products but this whole "Outage/Hack" has made me lose all faith in Sony its products and its ability to care for its customers Somebody get my lawyers on the phone
    KineticArtist
  • Wow! I am still seeing stars!

    This is by far the most comprehensive, greatest, wonderful and incredible offer from Sony I have ever got... yeah! $6 USD per month during a whole 3 months period... wow! It rocks! Yeah! envy me you xbox and Wii users, you will never get that sort of treatment on you networks. Now I will go Mario Partying, err... I mean, little big partying. =c)
    iaef
  • RE: Sony Says

    Why don't they give me free credit monitoring? That is what I need after this. Not free access to games that only work while you are a paying customer to Playstation Plus.
    bandacoo
  • Sony: The Joke On Us Continues

    Playstation Plus FOR FREE?!? Oooooh. You mean the console that falsely advertises a FREE NETWORK as a competitive selling point over Microsoft is going to very-temporarily give access to the slap-in-the-face Plus service which falsely delays content for the free network just to milk it's membership for undeserved cash? Wow, that's so INNOVATIVE. The same Plus service which requires continual membership to keep any of the free content? Sounds profitable to them, not a gift for me.

    Wow, so Sony goes back on it's word and screws it's user base YET AGAIN. What a piece of work they are. I am always amazed at the abuse most PS3 users gladly put up with from Sony, like they are privileged to be stepped on. These morons actually DEFEND Sony when Sony breaks their promises and screws them. It makes me sick that I bought this PS3 and gave them my money. If I had it to do over, I would have gotten a 360, and then I would actually be able to play real games with my friends right now.

    The ONLY way I would repect Sony again at this point is if tons of executives stepped down as they apologized to everyone profusely, INCLUDING George H, and RESTORED the Other OS option for EVERYONE, then announced a program for development of the Other OS and opensourced gaming.
    Drewid
  • RE: Sony Says

    I'd be happier with 17 dollars in my PSN wallet than free PSN+ membership.
    Str0b0
  • RE: Sony Says

    it says ONE month for free, based on a regular price of $17 for three months. Samic had it right from the start - a little less than $6. lame...
    super_flea
  • Class action awaits

    The true compensation will be in the inevitably successful class action lawsuit against these network-security challenged nitwits. However, that compensation will sadly be tied to the fact that the dipshit corporation loving Republicans appointed 5 of the current Supreme Court justices--which means we'll get $0.20 each per day we aren't able to access SONY's universe for (to compensate for the fact that we've already paid that to them.) This effectively means we won't be obliged to pay while we don't have service.
    There will be *no* compensation for loss of credit card data, and there will be *no* punitive damages as a result of this. Why? Because in cases like these 1) [insert big corporation name here] would claim that it could potentially result in bankruptcy, and produce hard-to-refute but bullshit numbers to support it, 2) it would encourage hackers to keep doing their job, and 3) dirty money flows everywhere, and the money sent to Sony got dirty as soon as it left our hands.
    Xemedria