Sony Expects £2bn Loss After Hack, Earthquake


The Playstation hack and the Japanese earthquake contribute to an expected £2 billion loss

Sony Corporation predicts a $3.2 billion (£2 bn) loss in its 2010 fiscal year after the Playstation hack and the earthquake in Japan.

Originally set to enjoy a $858 million (£531m) profit, the Japanese electronics giant had to re-evaluate its earnings for the 2010 fiscal year after being hit by two damaging incidents.

According to Sony, the Playstation hack has caused approximately $171.2 million (£106 mil) in losses, after taking down its service for several weeks and compromising 77 million users’ personal details.

The biggest loss of at least £269 million (£166 mil), however, came from the earthquake and the tsunami that struck Japan in March.

Sony faces more data breaches

The predicted loss is still subject to change, as the figures do not include expenses that may be caused by any lawsuits related to the Playstation hack.

“So far, we have not received any confirmed reports of customer identity theft issues, nor confirmed any misuse of credit cards from the cyber-attack,” said Sony, adding “those are key variables, and if that changes, the costs could change.”

Meanwhile, data breaches seem set to remain a major concern for the electronics giant, as the company has discovered on Sunday another hack , this time into its music entertainment unit in Greece.

The cyber attack took place on Sony’s artists’ websites, where users sign up for newsletters. The incident is said to compromise 8,500 user accounts, which contain usernames, passwords, email addresses, and telephone numbers. According to the company, the crime did not involve any credit card details, as the newsletter service is for free.

More hacks in Thailand and Indonesia

Apart from the hacking in Greece, Sony also reported two smaller incidents involving unauthorised access in Thailand and Indonesia.

It has been revealed that the company found traces of unauthorised accesses to its electronics marketing unit’s site in Thailand. Sony Music Indonesia’s website has also been modified by an unauthorised user.

Sony announced the matter has been taken care of, as the three websites in three countries have been already shut down.

“We don’t know whether the incidents in the three countries are linked to the attacks on the PlayStation Network,” said a Sony spokesman Atsuo Omagari, adding the company is still investigating each incident.

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