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Sony restores PlayStation Network in U.S. and Europe

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After more than six weeks of downtime, Sony is in the process of fully restoring access to its PlayStation Network and Qriocity services across the United States, Europe, and parts of Asia. The restoration has been a long time coming—Sony took down the services back in April following a hacking attack in which the company admits customer data was compromised—and the company is hoping to entice jilted customers back to the services with “Welcome Back” packages of premium services and game downloads.

Sony promised it would fully restore PSN services this week. Sony initially began restoring some PlayStation Network services in mid-May, only to be subjected to renewed attacks. Newly-restored services include the PlayStation Store and in-game transactions, meaning users can once again buy games, music, and other digital content.

Initial reports of access to PlayStation Network services indicated spotty response and errors, but the service seems to be stabilizing as it comes back online and perhaps pushes through an initial rush of returning customers.

Sony has not brought the services back up in Hong Kong, South Korea, or Japan, and has given no timeline for restoring PlayStation Network services in those markets.

Sony has admitted the breach will cost the company about $170 million to re-architect the service, as well as add “considerable” new security enhancements and customer protections. The company has created a new “Chief Information Security” officer to oversee protection of user data, beefed up customer support, and provided identity theft insurance for its users. So far, credit card companies have not reported a rise in fraud that can be traced to the PlayStation Network breach. Sony has assured customers that credit card information that was compromised was in an encrypted format.