Sony drops PSN breach fine appeal

Sony is no longer appealing against the penalty imposed after its PlayStation Network was hacked in 2011.

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The UK Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) imposed the £250,000 fine in January this year after finding Sony negligent when its PlayStation Network users' login and credit card details were compromised.

Sony said yesterday that it still disagreed with the ICO's ruling, but that continuing to oppose it would risk exposing sensitive security data. A Sony spokesman said: "This decision reflects our commitment to protect the confidentiality of our network security from disclosures in the course of the proceeding. We continue to disagree with the decision on the merits."

Last week, two Japanese video games publishers – Konami and Nintendo – revealed that the personal details of their users had been exposed. French games publisher Ubisoft also admitted that an account database on one of its sites had also been hacked. Users of games published by all three companies have been asked to change their passwords.

Unfortunate though they have been, none of the more recent hacks have compromised users' financial information, unlike the attack on Sony which affected around 70 million gamers using PSN to download and play games online as well as downloading films and music.

The hack caused PSN to be out of action for several days and millions of passwords to be compromised – causing the ICO to say that Sony's security measures were not good enough for a company that puts such an emphasis on technology. The regulator added that the fine was appropriate, as the leak "directly affected a huge number of consumers, and at the very least put them at risk of identity theft".

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