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Sony unsure if PlayStation Network user data was stolen

'External intrusion' probed as outage enters day 5

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Sony has yet to determine if customers' personal information and credit card details have been stolen as part of an external intrusion into its system that has left PSN, the PlayStation network, inaccessible for five days.

“Our efforts to resolve this matter involve re-building our system to further strengthen our network infrastructure,” Sony spokesman Patrick Seybold blogged on Saturday. “Though this task is time-consuming, we decided it was worth the time necessary to provide the system with additional security.”

The day before, Seybold said Sony systems suffered am “external intrusion” that required the PlayStation Network and the related Qriocity services to be taken offline on Wednesday evening.

On Monday, Seybold said Sony had no update or estimate when service might be restored.

What's more, according to PCWorld, members of Sony's public relations team said the company has not yet determined if personal information or payment card data of PlayStation Network users was exposed in the security breach. They vowed to warn users promptly if the company determines such information was stolen in the attack.

The intrusion follows months of pointed criticism by some PlayStation fans over Sony's legal dragnet of hackers who jailbroke the popular game console so it would run apps and games not officially sanctioned by Sony. Critics have argued that Sony's aggressive litigation has targeted hackers for publicly speaking about jailbreaks to hardware they have legally purchased.

Earlier this month, Sony dismissed its suit against George Hotz after the hacker promised to drop all future attempts to unlock the game console and refrain from technical discussions on the topic. Hotz, who goes by the hacker handle GeoHot, remained highly critical of Sony and has called for a global boycott of the company.

It's still unclear who is behind the PlayStation Network attack, which is affecting about 70 million registered users. ®

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