PSN Offers Welcome Back Package Amidst More Hacking

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Image Credit: Sony

After several weeks of complete shutdown, the PSN Store finally opens its doors once more to its PS3 customers.  Sony, as a peace offering to its disgruntled userbase, is providing a Welcome Back package that is generous to say the least.  Unfortunately this Christmas in June for Sony fans comes marred with two new woes – such as another round of hacking but more on that later.  As part of its grand apology, Sony is ponying up 30 days of Playstation Plus for non-subscribers of the service, an additional 60 days of free subscription to is current subscribers, and any PSN member’s pick of several popular titles for free and for keeps such as:

  • Dead Nation
  • inFAMOUS
  • LittleBigPlanet
  • Super Stardust HD
  • Wipeout HD + Fury

On top of the free games, Sony is giving away a slew of other trial memberships to its various entertainment services like Music Unlimited, along with 100 virtual items for Playstation Home users.  BEFORE you go jumping onto your PS3, allow me to inform you of a few flies in the ointment of Sony’s grand plan to get back on track; first from my own perspective and second from the latest security developments reported by the company’s CEO Michael Lynton.

I have not fired up my Playstation 3 for the past month, not for fear of what I may encounter when I learn the status of my account – but because I simply was bogged down with course work.  Upon hearing this gleeful news I enthusiastically pressed the on switch and waited as my PS3 booted.  Finally I was graced with the start screen and an update message at the top right corner.  As I waited for the update to download I began typing out this article.  Within a matter of minutes all was done and I hurried to press the Sign In button.

Sony's Welcome Back Package
Image Credit: Sony

Instead of being greeted with a welcome back message and the chance to gorge myself on the free goodies, I was informed that I needed to change my password.  This wasn’t too surprising since I did receive notice that stated I will be required to do this.  So I attempted to go through the wizard to do so but was smacked in the face with an error message.  I tried selecting Forgot Password, but received no such luck.

I ended up finding a reliable fix to this error that is being shared with many PSN members, so I will gladly post it here for others experiencing this issue.  Simply go to Sony’s site and under the Manage Account box click Sign In.  Enter your normal email and password, after doing so you will get a change password message, which will also be emailed to your PSN address.  Follow the steps on the email, log into the site, turn on your PS3, and try signing into PSN with your new password.  Ok back to the main event…

As indicated in the introduction, upon the weekend that Sony beat the war drums to summon back its army of players, the company was under attack by yet another group of hackers known as Lulzsec.  Lulzsec’s claim of attacking Sony was met with skepticism at first despite its confirmed attack made earlier in May on the official website for the American non-profit public broadcasting network PBS.  Though the company did not publicly mention Lulzsec as the source of the attack, CEO Michael Lynton and co-chairman of Sony Pictures Amy Pascal admitted after the company had previously denied being hacked that, “cyber crime … has hit Sony Pictures … We have confirmed that a breach has occurred and have taken action to protect against further intrusion.”

If this is not a wakeup call for Sony to bump up their security measures then it is hard to say what is.  With E3 week squeaking closer and closer, the company cannot afford this much negative press regarding its entertainment services.  Though we all have heard the cliche that “no publicity is bad publicity,” Sony will not be able to assure its customers to place their information on any of its servers if the company does not provide sufficient proof that everything is secure and under control.  Thankfully, the matter is not being taken lightly and Sony has the help of the FBI to further aid their efforts in repairing the cracks in the company’s safe.

Well Playstation users, I’ll pose this question to you: Do you feel reassured?

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