Sony Computer Entertainment has advised that it's begun a "phased restoration by region of PlayStation Network and Qriocity services" in the hope that some of these should be up and running again this week. The company's also announced "both a series of immediate steps to enhance security across the network and a new customer appreciation program to thank its customers for their patience and loyalty".
During the PlayStation Network's downtime, Sony has conducted what it describes as "an extensive audit of the system", and it's subsequently implemented a raft of new security measures. Amongst the new security features are: new automated software monitoring and configuration to help defend against new attacks; enhanced levels of data protection and encryption; enhanced ability to detect software intrusions within the network, unauthorised access and unusual activity patterns; and the implementation of additional firewalls.
With these new measures in place, Sony has begun the initial phase of network restoration, including but not limited to: online gameplay for both PS3 and PSP devices; access to Music Unlimited as powered by Qriocity; access to account management and password reset; access to download un-expired movie rentals on PS3, PSP and MediaGo; PlayStation Home; friends list; and chat functionality
"This criminal act against our network had a significant impact not only on our consumers, but our entire industry," said Kazuo Hirai, executive deputy president of Sony Corporation. "These illegal attacks obviously highlight the widespread problem with cyber security. We take the security of our consumers' information very seriously and are committed to helping our consumers protect their personal data. In addition, the organisation has worked around the clock to bring these services back online, and are doing so only after we had verified increased levels of security across our networks."
In recognition of the loyalty of its customers and the inconvenience caused to them, Sony has also begun to detail a "customer-appreciation program" to compensate for the network's downtime. PSN users from each territory will be offered select PlayStation content for free download, with specifics to be announced shortly. All PlayStation Network users will be offered a full, free 30-day subscription to the PlayStation Plus service, with existing users offered an additional 30 days for free. All PSN users will also receive 30 days' free use of the Qriocity service in countries where this service is offered. According to the press release from Sony, more "welcome back" offerings "will be rolled out over the coming weeks as the company returns the PlayStation Network and Qriocity services to the quality standard users have grown to enjoy and strive to exceed those exceptions", although they're yet to be detailed.
Additionally, Kotaku reports that Sony is currently considering the re-imbursement of costs incurred by PSN users in replacing their credit cards. Currently, Sony contends that although the possibility that credit card details have been accessed during the intrusion cannot be ruled out, there have been no reported or confirmed incidents of credit-card fraud.
"Our global audience of PlayStation Network and Qriocity consumers was disrupted," continued Hirai. "We have learned lessons along the way about the valued relationship with our consumers, and to that end, we will be launching customer appreciation program for registered consumers as a way of expressing our gratitude for their loyalty during this network downtime, as we work even harder to restore and regain their trust in us and our services."