After announcing the scope of the breach on its PlayStation Network and Qriocity systems, Sony said it was not certain if any credit card information was accessed. Variety reports that Sony shut down the PlayStation Network six days ago after discovering the breach, but the entertainment company’s recent announcement was the first that gave substantial information about the extent of the intrusion.
“Although we are still investigating the details of this incident, we believe that an unauthorized person has obtained the following information that you provided: name, address (city, state, zip), country, email address, birth date, PlayStation Network/Qriocity password and login, and handle/PSN online ID,” wrote Patrick Seybold, senior director of corporate communications for SCEA. “It is also possible that your profile data, including purchase history and billing address … and your PlayStation Network/Qriocity password security answers may have been obtained. … While there is no evidence at this time that credit card data was taken, we cannot rule out the possibility.”
Although credit cards can be used to purchase downloaded games, expansion packs, movies, episodes and music, Sony does not charge an annual subscription fee for access to the PSN, so the bulk of the 70 million affected accounts do not have to worry about credit card fraud.
“The company warned subscribers to be on alert for identity theft attempts as well as email, telephone and postal scams and has arranged with the three major U.S. credit bureaus to allow users to put a “high alert” status on their credit accounts, which could cut back on some of the potential damage. It is also advising them to change their password when service is ultimately restored,” according to Variety.