Sony said on Monday that PlayStation and Qriocity network resume full PlayStation Network services in Japan on July 6, completing the final stretch of the company’s11 week restoration of its online operations after they were attacked by hackers.
The maker of the PlayStation 3 game consoles will bring back online purchases of game content and video on demand from the PlayStation Network and Qriocity in Japan starting July 6, the Tokyo-based company said in a statement today.
The attack on Sony’s data centers in San Diego compromised more than 100 million customer accounts, the second-largest online data breach in U.S. history, and will cost an estimated 14 billion yen ($173 million) for the company this fiscal year. Chairman Howard Stringer told shareholders last week the services will continue to be a main source of growth.
Sony reintroduced service in stages, with online gaming first being switched on for users in North America, Europe, the Middle East, Australia and New Zealand in the middle of May. That followed for users in Asia in June, and PlayStation Store service was subsequently restored for users in all regions except Japan.
The security breaches have forced Sony executives to appear before a U.S. Congressional hearing, and were followed by a reshuffle of management at Sony's gaming unit. Its shares have lost 12 percent since April 26, the day before the company revealed the first attack.
As many as 90 percent of PlayStation Network users have come back after services were restored in the U.S. and Europe in June, Stringer said in Tokyo last week.
Stringer had earlier apologized and offered U.S. users of its PlayStation Network and Qriocity online services a year of free identity-theft protection after the system was crippled.
The company boosted security by increasing the number of firewalls between servers and adding software to monitor intrusions and system vulnerabilities before resuming the online entertainment services, it said in May. Sony also appointed Fumiaki Sakai to the newly created post of chief information security officer.
Cyber security is quickly becoming a priority for policymakers. An attack on defense contractor Lockheed Martin may have compromised SecureID tokens made by EMC Corp, while data on U.S. government officials may have been stolen through an attack on Google Inc.