First PSN, now this: Sony shuts down SOE Facebook games in investigation [Updated]

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Sony Online Entertainment
When it rains in Sony headquarters, it pours. Unfortunately, Sony's MMO and Facebook game-playing customers can no longer laugh at their unfortunate PlayStation 3 and PSP-owning pals. Sony Online Entertainment has shut down all services to both its massively multiplayer games and, more importantly for you, its Facebook games. Dungeon Overlord, Poxnora, Wildlife Refuge and several more SOE Facebook games are unavailable. According to Sony, the shut down was in response to an "issue that warrants enough concern" for it to take down the service immediately. For greater context, the issue was found during an investigation in response to the recent PlayStation Network disaster.

Here is the official statement from Sony:
Dear valued SOE Customers,

We have had to take the SOE service down temporarily. In the course of our investigation into the intrusion into our systems we have discovered an issue that warrants enough concern for us to take the service down effective immediately. We will provide an update later today (Monday).
If you ever purchased anything within an SOE game with your credit card directly, I would pay close attention to this news as it develops. You can bet that we'll be watching this story like a hawk, so stay tuned. We've contacted an SOE representative for comment.

Update: Sony has issued a press release regarding the SOE shutdown. Read it in full below:
Tokyo, May 3, 2011 – Sony Corporation and Sony Computer Entertainment announced today that their ongoing investigation of illegal intrusions into Sony Online Entertainment LLC (SOE, the company) systems revealed yesterday morning (May 2, Tokyo time) that hackers may have stolen SOE customer information on April 16th and 17th, 2011 (PDT). SOE is based in San Diego, California, U.S.A.

This information, which was discovered by engineers and security consultants reviewing SOE systems, showed that personal information from approximately 24.6 million SOE accounts may have been stolen, as well as certain information from an outdated database from 2007. The information from the outdated database that may have been stolen includes approximately 12,700 non-U.S. credit or debit card numbers and expiration dates (but not credit card security codes), and about 10,700 direct debit records of certain customers in Austria, Germany, Netherlands and Spain.

With the current outage of the PlayStation® Network and Qriocity™ services and the ongoing investigation into the recent attacks, SOE had also undertaken an intensive investigation into its system. Upon discovery of this additional information, the company promptly shut down all servers related to SOE services while continuing to review and upgrade all of its online security systems in the face of these unprecedented cyber-attacks.

On May 1, Sony apologized to its customers for the inconvenience caused by its network services outages. The company is working with the FBI and continuing its own full investigation while working to restore all services.

Sony is making this disclosure as quickly as possible after the discovery of the theft, and the company has posted information on its website and will send e-mails to all consumers whose data may have been stolen.

The personal information of the approximately 24.6 million SOE accounts that was illegally obtained, to the extent it had been provided to SOE, is as follows:

• name
• address
• e-mail address
• birthdate
• gender
• phone number
• login name
• hashed password.

In addition to the information above, the 10,700 direct debit records from accounts in Austria, Germany, Netherlands and Spain, include:

• bank account number
• customer name
• account name
• customer address.

SOE will grant customers 30 days of additional time on their subscriptions, in addition to compensating them one day for each day the system is down. It is also in the process of outlining a "make good" plan for its PlayStation®3 MMOs (DC Universe Online and Free Realms). More information will be released this week.

Additionally, the company is committed to helping its customers protect their personal data and will provide a complimentary offering to assist users in enrolling in identity theft protection services and/or similar programs. The implementation will be at a local level and further details will be made available shortly in each region.

[Source: Dungeon Overlord]

[Via: Massively]

Are you upset over your favorite SOE Facebook games being shut down indefinitely? What do you suspect was the cause for alarm? Sound off in the comments. Add Comment.
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