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More news emerges regarding the state of PSN as Sony continues to struggle against hacks...
Sony has revealed that it still doesn't have a timeframe for when its PSN and Qriocity services will be coming back online. PS3 users have been unable to access the services since last Wednesday due to an "external intrusion" [read: the work of hackers].
"I know you are waiting for additional information on when PlayStation Network and Qriocity services will be online. Unfortunately, I don't have an update or timeframe to share at this point in time," said Patrick Seybold, Sony's Senior Director of Corporate Communications and Social Media, on the PS blog.
"As we previously noted, this is a time intensive process and we're working to get them back online quickly," Seybold added. "We'll keep you updated with information as it becomes available. We once again thank you for your patience."
In even more worrying news, reports elsewhere indicate that Sony is unsure whether credit card details and PSN user information have been compromised as a result of the "external intrusion".
This is according to a PC World report citing comments from Sony Computer Entertainment Japan spokesperson, Satoshi Fukuoka. This uncertainty regarding credit card info was later corroborated by Seybold, according to Kotaku.
It's worth noting at this point, however, that there have not been widespread reports by PSN users of credit card piracy on their accounts over the last week.
Informed speculation over on Reddit points towards a new type of custom firmware as a possible culprit for the latest hacks. The firmware allows users to turn a retail PS3 unit into a debug one (used by developers).
Custom firmware of this kind is nothing new, although this latest version (called Rebug) apparently provides access to Sony's trusted developer network and has opened the door for users to enter fake credit card information into PSN and pirate content at their will. However, this all remains purely speculative at this stage.
Hacking organisation, Anonymous has denied responsibility for the latest disruptions to PSN. Anonymous carried out attacks on Sony websites and services earlier in the month as part of a campaign against the legal action Sony took on PS3 jailbreaker, George Hotz.
More as we get it...
Update: The personal information of PSN and Qriocity users has now officially been compromised according to a Sony statement on the EU PlayStation blog (which includes a template e-mail that the company is sending out to effected users). Although Sony is not ruling out the possibility that credit card data may also have been comrpomised, it has been quick to assert that there is no evidence so far that such data has been taken.
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