Sony is a great electronics company, they produce some awesome stuff like the lovely S-series Sony Vaio I am using which is probably the best work laptop I have owned.
However, the Playstation Network (PSN) is still down and it appears that personal data has been compromised according to the official Playstation blog http://blog.eu.playstation.com/
I feel for Sony a bit as the root cause of the breach was out of their control and managing a situation like this is not easy when security and personal information is concerned. On the flip side you could say the security of their platform was inadequbut I think if hackers want to really do damage they can and will. I remember a recent Sky News feature that showed how easily Chinese hackers could ‘on demand’ steal personal information http://t.co/8VbqDW2 that demonstrated this very threat.
Yes Sony could be managing this better from a PR angle but if you are engaging with “outside experts” to assess a situation
It may take some time to understand the nature and severity of the breach
You dont want to alarm your customers unnecessarily
You need to protect your system whilst doing the above as another subsequent breach would seriously damage your reputation.
It says something about your internal security team which is why I think stating you are using outside help is a double edge sword. It protrays an image that you do not have expertise in-house to deal with the problem. On the plus side, the experts should reassure your customer base that your system will be more robust and secure.
I think Sony deserve credit for providing a free gaming network to differentiate themselves from Xbox Live. I don’t think customers are less demanding when something is free especially if they use it everyday. Customers should be patient and take necessary steps to protect themselves as this type of intrusion or service downtime can happen to any company whether a free or paid service.
Like other companies who have experienced outages regardless of the root cause Sony should learn valuable lessons and bolster their security practices accordingly. A gesture to it’s many users may be worthwhile too. This episode will no doubt be forgotten in the future once gamers get back to playing their favourite games.