Hackers Likely to Continue Efforts

By Don Reisinger  |  Posted 2011-05-03 Print this article Print


5. Security firms get going

Though much of the focus in the security space is in protecting the desktop and now mobile phones, it wouldn't be all that surprising if security firms attempt to capitalize on the PlayStation Network breach. Expect solutions for protecting personal information to continue to crop up from vendors who see an opportunity to help customers.

6. Continued targeting

The fun isn't over for Sony, Microsoft or any other online-gaming provider. Now that hackers have been able to breach Sony's defenses and steal private information, they will likely only continue those efforts. Sony might have enlisted the help of criminal investigators to help in this case, but that won't be enough to stop malicious hackers. A success only inspires them to try again and again.

7. Microsoft's attempt to capitalize

Microsoft should (and likely will) use the PlayStation Network breach as an opportunity. For one, the company can beef up its Xbox Live security to ensure such a problem doesn't occur on its service. It can also be the so-called "safe" destination for those who don't necessarily trust Sony any longer. In the coming months, look for Microsoft to use Sony's troubles for its own gain. After all, who can blame it?

8. More jarring details

Though Sony wasn't so forthcoming when its service was initially hacked, the company has come a long way in being more open about the breach. However, in the coming months, as Sony starts to lick its wounds, expect many more details to emerge. Unfortunately, those details might be jarring to those who currently subscribe to the PlayStation Network. As with everything else in the technology industry, it could take months to gain a full understanding of the nature and scope of the breach.

9. A management shake-up

It's no surprise that this massive security breach has prompted critics to call for Sony CEO Sir Howard Stringer to step down. They say that this is the last straw for the executive, who has committed several missteps at Sony as of late. It's hard to refute their logic. When a security breach of this monumental size takes place people are usually replaced. This incident is so egregious it looks like Sony's network infrastructure was weakly protected and an inviting target for hackers. Heads should certainly roll and not just the IT executives who were in charge of security. Considering the trouble Sir Howard finds himself in over this latest breach, it might not be long before he's forced to step aside.

10. A return to the old ways

All this talk of potentially negative effects of the PlayStation Network breach after the service is restored leaves out one other possible result: a return to status quo. So far, Sony has handled the breach quite well. And as more details emerge, it seems that the company did a satisfactory job of protecting important data. If Sony plays its cards right and the mainstream starts to focus on other things, the PlayStation Network and Qriocity might just return to the way things were before the breach. And all this will be forgotten. 

Don Reisinger is a freelance technology columnist. He started writing about technology for Ziff-Davis' Gearlog.com. Since then, he has written extremely popular columns for CNET.com, Computerworld, InformationWeek, and others. He has appeared numerous times on national television to share his expertise with viewers. You can follow his every move at http://twitter.com/donreisinger.

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