Sony alerts UK gamers after attack
British gaming fans may be among tens of thousands of people whose stolen personal information was used to try to access the Sony PlayStation online video games network, the electronics giant has said.
Sony announced that it had detected a large number of "unauthorised sign-in attempts" on the PlayStation Network, the Sony Entertainment Network and Sony Online Entertainment, affecting approximately 93,000 accounts.
Earlier this year, the PlayStation video games console was subject to online security breaches which may have led to the theft of over 100 million users' personal details, including credit card information.
A spokeswoman for Sony United Kingdom and Ireland said that it was still not certain if users in Britain had been targeted in the most recent attack but that the company had locked all affected accounts and would be sending emails to their users and requiring secure password resets.
She said: "There have been a small number of accounts accessed globally but there is no country-specific breakdown yet. Our networks have not been hacked, but rather password and user ID combos have been accessed and passed on to third parties."
A spokesman for Sony Network Entertainment International assured users that the credit card numbers associated with the accounts were not at risk.
Sony suffered two massive online attacks in April and May this year, leading to the theft of PlayStation network users' personal information.
The first attack saw the theft of data from 77 million users of the network in one of the worst break-ins in internet history. In the second intrusion, an extra 24.6 million computer game users were thought to have had their personal details stolen.
Hackers' collective Lulzsec claimed responsibility after the second attack and issued a statement saying: "Every bit of data we took wasn't encrypted.
"Sony stored over 1,000,000 passwords of its customers in plaintext, which means it's just a matter of taking it. They were asking for it."