Playstation Network users continue their vigil as Sony has announced that the current outage of their free on-line service will be indefinite and that only some features of the service will be available in about a week’s time. The outage has been in effect since April 21st. Further, they also announced that the initial cause of the outage was due to a malicious intrusion by outside hackers and that there was a large security breach of personally identifiable information including name, address, email, birthdate, login name and password. They are not certain if credit card information was breached, but suggest that it should be accounted for by detailing numerous credit fraud protective actions.

Meanwhile, Sony will keep the service down while they make security enhancements and ‘rebuild [the] system to provide you with greater protection of your personal information.’ As a member of the IT community, I am distressed that they will rebuild a system in a matter of weeks, that took them years to get up and running. Moreover, during this outage, anyone that uses a service that relies on the PSN user account will seemingly not work. This includes Netflix and any online multiplayer functionality. It seems that Sony is beginning to learn a lot about what is needed to be a services company and not just an electronics company.

I have included the full press release after the jump. Please read it carefully, change your passwords and protect your data. This is serious stuff.

Massachusetts residents should be aware that there are specific laws that deal with identity theft and that Sony has released a separate consumer alert specifically for those in the Bay State. That can be seen here.

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