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How Can Sony Fix The PSN Debacle?

Sony has had a rocky couple of weeks as the result of the intrusion that occurred at the company's San Diego data center. The source of the attack has not yet been discovered, but the investigation has been ongoing—and the government is now pressing the entertainment giant for answers to how user information was compromised. There have been no confirmed reports of any information being officially stolen or manipulated, but the possibility still exists. Sony revealed the gritty details of the mess nearly a week after the attack occurred, which caused quite a stir within the gaming community and even provoked some to file lawsuits against the company. Customers were advised to monitor their credit card transactions and to be aware of email and phone scams... just in case.

Now that extensive measures have been put into place to protect the future integrity of the network, Sony is readying the online services, at least partially, to become live again the week of May 1. The rebuilt infrastructure will sport some heavier security protocols and has been relocated to a different facility. In order make amends with its patient and loyal customer and fan base, the company is promoting a “Welcome Back” program which will give users a chance to access some premium content for a limited time, for free. While this may be a nice gesture, most users are stating that it's simply not enough to counter the bad—and would like to see a different, more satisfying approach. Personally, I realize that the company has likely lost a lot of money during this whole dilemma, so I am not expecting much. However, I also think that Sony cares enough about their customers to make things right and the downtime which was required to rework the system is more than enough.


Of course I will never turn away from free stuff, especially when it comes to gaming. A free month of PlayStation Network Plus sounds enticing but aside from the cloud saving the value really depends on what is available during the grace period. Those who use Qriocity may fair better but for the most part the offerings are somewhat shallow. There is supposedly something else in the works but no details have been submitted at the time of this writing. Sony should have implemented a freebie better than a mini such as a voucher to redeem some extra content for a game of your choosing. It's not likely that any $10+ PSN titles will be up for grabs but the idea is nice.

The PS3 sure feels stripped without the connection to PSN, so having the systems back online will be like setting it up for the first time again. At the end of the day, there's isn't a whole lot that can be said after “sorry about that massive data leak, your information was compromised” but at least Sony is making a small effort to repair the damage for the end user. Giving away free stuff and making special offers is cool, but the real prize will be to never have to deal with something like this ever again.


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