Howard Stringer Letter to PlayStation Network Users; PSN Services to Return Shortly

New today on the PlayStation Network front is services could be making a return shortly.

Sony Network Entertainment and Sony Computer Entertainment security teams have been working around the clock and are in the final stages of internal testing of what should be a more robust and secure network system when PlayStation Network and Qriocity services are restored.

No set date has been named but given its the final stages of testing, it can’t be that much further off.

Howard Stringer, the Chairman, Chief Executive Officer and President, Sony Corporation has also written a letter to PlayStation Network users over the whole PSN incident.

PlayStation Network Howard Stringer
Read below to hear what he has to say to you:

Dear Friends,

I know this has been a frustrating time for all of you.

Let me assure you that the resources of this company have been focused on investigating the entire nature and impact of the cyber-attack we’ve all experienced and on fixing it. We are absolutely dedicated to restoring full and safe service as soon as possible and rewarding you for your patience. We will settle for nothing less.

To date, there is no confirmed evidence any credit card or personal information has been misused, and we continue to monitor the situation closely. We are also moving ahead with plans to help protect our customers from identity theft around the world. A program for U.S. PlayStation Network and Qriocity customers that includes a $1 million identity theft insurance policy per user was launched earlier today and announcements for other regions will be coming soon.

As we have announced, we will be offering a “Welcome Back” package to our customers once our PlayStation Network and Qriocity services are up and running. This will include, among other benefits, a month of free PlayStation Plus membership for all PSN customers, as well as an extension of subscriptions for PlayStation Plus and Music Unlimited customers to make up for time lost.

As a company we — and I — apologize for the inconvenience and concern caused by this attack. Under the leadership of Kazuo Hirai, we have teams working around the clock and around the world to restore your access to those services as quickly, and as safely, as possible.

I know some believe we should have notified our customers earlier than we did. It’s a fair question. As soon as we discovered the potential scope of the intrusion, we shut down the PlayStation Network and Qriocity services and hired some of the best technical experts in the field to determine what happened. I wish we could have gotten the answers we needed sooner, but forensic analysis is a complex, time-consuming process. Hackers, after all, do their best to cover their tracks, and it took some time for our experts to find those tracks and begin to identify what personal information had — or had not — been taken.

As a result of what we discovered we notified you of the breach. Our investigation is ongoing, and we are upgrading our security so that if attacks like this happen again, our defenses will be even stronger.

In the last few months, Sony has faced a terrible earthquake and tsunami in Japan. But now we are facing a very man-made event – a criminal attack on us — and on you — and we are working with the FBI and other law enforcement agencies around the world to apprehend those responsible.

In the coming days, we will restore service to the networks and welcome you back to the fun. I wanted to personally reach out and let you know that we are committed to serving you to the very best of our ability, protecting your information better than ever, and getting you back to what you signed up for – all the games and great entertainment experiences that you expect from Sony.

With best regards,

Howard Stringer

The mention of a $1 million identity theft insurance policy per user coverage for U.S. PlayStation Network users is a good start on the road to recovery. Lets hope the rest of the world will get something along the same lines.

Details of the $1 million identity theft insurance policy was revealed earlier today on the PlayStation Blog. Offered through Debix, Inc., an AllClear ID Plus protection will be available for free for the first 12 months for all PlayStation Network users that register for the program when access is restored.

Most information covered in the letter has already been mentioned in some form or other in the last two weeks since the PSN hacking however Howard Stringer does give an apology for the inconvenience and concerns caused which is better than nothing I guess.

[SOURCE]: A Letter from Howard Stringer

[SOURCE]: Important Step for Service Restoration

[SOURCE]: Sony Offering Free ‘AllClear ID Plus’ Identity Theft Protection in the United States through Debix, Inc.