PlayStation Network has added 3 mln customer since breach

Sony CEO Howard Stringer

Speaking at this week’s IFA consumer electronics show in Berlin, Sony CEO Howard Stringer touted the re-birth of his company’s PlayStation Network, claiming the operation has added more than 3 million new customers since PlayStation Network came back online in the wake of a catastrophic data breach.

“We have more than 3 million new customers since the network came back online, and sales are exceeding what we had before the cyberattacks,” Stringer said at a news conference, according to CNet.

Sony was forced to shut down its PlayStation Network earlier this year in the wake of a massive data breach that saw customer information compromised—including email addresses and credit card information. Although Sony says any illegally-accessed credit card info was encrypted, the company sprung for identity theft insurance for PlayStation Network customers anyway, and took PlayStation Network offline for several weeks while the company aggressively revamped its security. The protracted incident is estimated to have cost Sony some $170 million.

Many customers were disillusioned with Sony and canceled their PlayStation Network accounts; Sony has tried to retain customers with “Welcome Back” packages as well as new games and content—and if Stringer’s comments are to be believed, a significant number of consumers are apparently willing to let bygones be bygones and resume using Sony’s PlayStation Network.

As part of a move to vertically integrate its offerings, Sony has now organized PlayStation Network with its Qriocity music service (now called Music Unlimited—also a victim of the cyberattacks) along with Video on Demand as a general “Sony Entertainment Network.” To appeal to gamers and the social Internet generation, Sony has also announced pending revisions to its PlayStation Home virtual world that will offer a more social experience.

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