PS3 online services slowly being restored

Posted by Mike Luttrell

The huge, long-running outage to the Playstation Network may be coming to an end.

But the damage control is only just beginning. After cutting off its users for more than a week, Sony is now ready to start rolling out restoration to the PSN, following an attack that compromised user security and private data.

"The company has implemented a variety of new security measures to provide greater protection of personal information. SNEI and its third-party experts have conducted extensive tests to verify the security strength of the PlayStation Network and Qriocity services," Sony wrote in a statement.

As part of the initial restoration, users can now play online PS3 games, access the console's Music Unlimited streaming music service, log onto Playstation Home, see their friend list, and engage in text and video chats.

Still unavailable is the Playstation Store, which is significant. The reason the digital download store is still not accessible is likely because there is still concern that the hackers who compromised PSN access have access to credit card data from anyone who has ever made a purchase on the Playstation Store.

Nevertheless, it seems like Sony has sealed off the back-door access obtained by hackers, and to thank users for their patience, Sony is going to offer a "Welcome Back" promotion, offering some free content:

* Each territory will be offering selected PlayStation entertainment content for free download. Specific details of this content will be announced in each region soon.
* All existing PlayStation Network customers will be provided with 30 days free membership in the PlayStation Plus premium service. Current members of PlayStation Plus will receive 30 days free service.
* Music Unlimited powered by Qriocity subscribers (in countries where the service is available) will receive 30 days free service.