WE CAN FINALLY PLAY ONLINE AGAIN!
Hopefully that will be the last time I ever see those words. After roughly an entire month of PlayStation 3 users being without their online capabilities, Sony has announced that the attack on PlayStation Network and Sony Online Entertainment is finally coming to a close. PlayStation users across the globe will slowly start having their services restored. Somewhat, anyway.
For those of you who don’t pay attention to current events or are not internet savvy and are wanting a bit of background info, the series of events leading up to the hack goes back a little further than you would think. PSN has been down since April 16th as the result of a massive hack, with Internet subculture Anonymous being the prime suspect. George Hotz, known by his online alias geohot and his status as the first person to jailbreak the iPhone, turned his attention to the PlayStation 3 console as Sony removed the “Install Other OS” feature.
Hotz posted codes and detailed instructions online to bypass this and subsequently got himself targeted and eventually sued by the multinational corporation. Anonymous was quick to jump to the defense of one of their own, and launched a DDoS (Distributed Denial-of-Service) referred to as Operation: Sony a few days before Sony and Hotz settled out of court. Anon denies the continuation of the attack, but admits that it could be solo members acting of their own accord.
Fast forward to now, a few days shy of one month later, and Sony claims to have beefed up security and put their services back online. Millions of users have clamored to update their software passwords causing the rollout to be slow and full of hiccups, with some even believing that another attack had occurred. Starting in North America, the rollout has encompassed most of the US, and services have so far been restored to Europe, Australia and New Zealand. The one country that I assumed Sony would hit first, however, is still inactive. Japan’s government officials haven’t given Sony the green light and are refusing to do so until Sony can prove to them that their residents personal information is in safer hands. Always with the good ideas.
The question on every gamers mind is, “What will Sony do for its loyal customers who have been patiently waiting for a month?” Well Patrick Seybold, Senior Director of Corporate Communications and Social Media, gave a very solid answer today in the PlayStation Network blog. He details Sony’s upcoming “Welcome Back” customer appreciation program specifically for its users in North America.Gamers with existing PlayStation accounts will have their choice of two full, downloadable PS3 and PSP games from a list, free 30 days PSPlus membership for new members or a 60 day upgrade for registered users, and more. Kind of a small gesture to say “Thanks for putting up with our shit!” but regardless, it’s still welcome. For an extensive list of all the goodies they‘re offering, check out the PS Blog.
Playstation Store is still down indefinitely, but Sony says it will be getting multiple updates every week til caught up. Three Tuesday publishes of new content were missed, which included games like Mortal Kombat 9, Portal 2, and the inFamous 2 beta.
More information regarding how to redeem the “Welcome Back” offer will be revealed later this week, so stay tuned here for all the dirty details as they’re being uncovered. Now if you’ll excuse me, I’ve been waiting all month to merk some bitches.