The PSN Hack: what could have been done differently?

Logo of the PlayStation Network
Image via Wikipedia

Sony took a lot of heat during the PSN outage caused by a hack and the theft of potentially all of our PSN account and more importantly payment card details. I think Sony were unlucky to a large degree. They were right to defend themselves against the hacker George Hotz who published details on how to hack the system which could lead to pirating games.

Sony perhaps didn’t have the most robust security measures in place and as such they were apparently pretty easy pray for angry hackers with a lot of misguided talent. It’s a shame that these people can’t do something more constructive with their technical abilities and instead choose to attack a company that is only doing what it is completely entitled to do, protect it’s intellectual property. I don’t buy the hacker’s claims that they should be able to do whatever they want to the PS3’s that they own. Sony have a fair use policy and they have a right to enforce that to protect their business.

I think the main anger from fans towards Sony was because they appeared to not rush to warn people about data possibly being stolen. Many believe that they should have warned people straight away even if they weren’t sure anything had been taken, just to be on the safe side. I agree with this and I think Sony did make an error here, but as I’m not really one to hold long term grudges on brands I wouldn’t threaten to switch to Xbox or boycott Sony products for example like some people did.

All you can really do is just hope that they really have beefed up their security to an extent where we won’t have a repeat of this scenario again in the future. I’m not going to switch to using PSN cards to pay for PSN content because of this, but I can understand why a lot of people may choose to do so.

This whole fiasco becoming mainstream news has got to be damaging to Sony. All a lot of people will see is that Sony have been hacked and lost people’s private data. A lot of these people may not have ever owned a Playstation, but they may still be put off from buying a Sony TV down the line. You’ve got to hope that this isn’t the popular opinion, because Sony certainly don’t deserve that.

This type of hacking is in vogue at the moment you could say. We’ve seen numerous hacks on almost a daily basis on all kinds of websites. From game developers to news sites and more, it appears that no one is safe. In a way, this just validates Sony and just shows that no matter how much time you spend defending yourselves against data theft, it seems that no company can avoid being breached. If a hacker group wants to do something, then it seems like not much can stop them. This is probably why Microsoft didn’t make fun of Sony at the conference, because they know that it would be like showing a red cape to a bull and making themselves the next prime target.