The PlayStation Network (PSN) is down and there seems to be no end to the disruption in the immediate future.
Sony says the PSN is down is due to an "unauthorised external intrusion". While no culprit has been named or charged (the hacker network, Anonymous, that once threatened to attack the PSN, has distanced itself from this incident) it’s clear this is serious.
Sony says: "Our investigation indicates that all PlayStation Network/Qriocity accounts may have been affected".
The network is still down after more than a week and Sony has "engaged an outside, recognized security firm to conduct a full and complete investigation into what happened, and … taken steps to enhance security and strengthen [its] network infrastructure by re-building [the PSN] system to provide you with greater protection of your personal information".
So whoever did this may have all of the personal details you have provided to the PSN. This could include your name, address (city, postal code), country, email address, billing address, birthdate, PSN/Qriocity passwords and PSN online ID.
This raises the question of credit card security. Sony advises that it does not know if credit card details were stolen, but that PSN users should be extra vigilant and check their credit card for any suspicious purchases.
Sony is emailing all 77 million PSN users directly to notify them of the situation and give security advice but says that it will not be asking for information. Scammers will take advantage of this to get details out of unsuspecting consumers, so if you receive an email claiming to be from Sony and asking for information, do not respond.
And finally if you were lazy and used your PSN password as the password for any other service, change it now.
The official PlayStation website has a FAQ page for what is happening.
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