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Sony To Offer Free Identity Theft Monitoring 157

olsmeister writes "Several weeks after having the PlayStation Network hacked, and apologizing to users for the breach, Sony is offering $1 million in identity theft protection for users who sign up before June 18th. The protection is being offered through Debix and is called AllClear ID Plus. This appears to be some kind of custom plan especially for Sony, as their normal offerings are called AllClear ID Free and AllClear ID Pro."
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Sony To Offer Free Identity Theft Monitoring

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  • yeah (Score:2, Troll)

    by frozentier ( 1542099 )
    I'd trust Sony with protecting (or arranging protection of) my identity...
    • In the case of this breach, the ramifications could be long lasting and/or not felt for a long time. Depending on the luck of the die (as there are so many ppl affected, you may not see any attempt of intrusion by them for a long time). My feeling is that this protection that Sony is offering will be for a short time and it will be a limited service. They'll offer you a certain level of protection for free but you'll have to pay for it if you want anything beyond that and that it'll be free only for a sh

      • ...This just gives the ID theft protection company a way to collect potential customer--resulting in no real protection, just a client info exchange between Sony and the ID theft protection company--worthless and expensive is what comes to mind.

        Seconded. I got the opportunity for "free credit monitoring" after a breach at a different company. However, the online form to submit your info was unencrypted. I checked the page's source. No https anywhere. And they were asking for things that an ID thief would

  • by SomeoneGotMyNick ( 200685 ) on Friday May 06, 2011 @08:15AM (#36046092) Journal

    So, when we sign up for this (somewhat unknown) Debix service, can we look forward to our full identities being stolen in the near future?

  • Rights (Score:5, Insightful)

    by swilver ( 617741 ) on Friday May 06, 2011 @08:16AM (#36046098)

    What rights am I signing away by doing this?

    • Re:Rights (Score:4, Interesting)

      by dunezone ( 899268 ) on Friday May 06, 2011 @08:22AM (#36046158) Journal
      Actually this is a good point. When the PSN finally comes back on we will all be forced to change our passwords, I guarantee they will put up a new EULA that says by agreeing to this you give the right to sue us or join in a class action lawsuit. Now of course EULA have questionable legality but they will do anything to cover themselves and throwing in a few new sentences might be enough for a judge to side with Sony.
      • Why would someone who wants to sue SONY for incompetence want to keep using their products?
        • It's like training your dog, if it poos in the house, you discipline it, you don't throw it out.
          And for people like me who have a big catalogue of games for the PS3 don't want to throw them out.

          • Sounds like you have some things to list on eBay or Craigslist to me.

            Seriously, are you going to keep feeding this company? Okay, you spent money -- a lot of money. At what point would you consider Sony "too much" to continue dealing with? How bad would it have to get? Or perhaps you are afraid to let go like the way people are in a bad marriage?

            Games are NOT an investment. Once you spend that money, it's only worth what you can resell it for.

          • Except Sony bit Geohotz, and it peed on our file registry's. It doesn't play well with the other pets. Yeah, ditch it!

          • It's like training your dog, if it poos in the house, you discipline it, you don't throw it out.

            Suing SONY and given them a fine are two different things. Here's a better example. If my neighbor hits my parked car and I sue him, I don't see why I would want to associate with him anymore. And on the other side of the coin, my neighbor might want me to sign a waiver before I come over to his house for fear that I'll sue him again.

          • If it attacks you or the new baby, you put it down. Pets are only almost family. A ps3 even less so.
          • by jd2112 ( 1535857 )
            And like training a dog, unless you catch them at the moment they squat the discipline is completely useless.
          • I'd throw out the poo. Disciplined poo is still poo.

        • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

          by Krneki ( 1192201 )

          Why would someone who wants to sue SONY for incompetence want to keep using their products?

          Sony users have Goldfish memory.

        • by node 3 ( 115640 )

          Why would someone who wants to sue SONY for incompetence want to keep using their products?

          Because it's a damned fine console?

      • Re:Rights (Score:5, Insightful)

        by ProppaT ( 557551 ) on Friday May 06, 2011 @08:52AM (#36046396) Homepage

        This right here is what I've been waiting to see. You know there will be a new EULA. If Sony is smart, they won't include anything like that in the EULA (the last thing they need is more bad press), but I'm definitely waiting to read a lawyer's take on the EULA before I hit accept (normally I wouldn't, but in this case you know there's going to be a dozen or so breakdowns of the whole thing...and, besides, I'm too lazy to read it myself).

        We really need to rework this whole EULA agreement deal. If companies are going to bombard us with new ones on a regular basis, they need to be bulleted points confined to a one page or so document. We already spent a ton of money on these dumb consoles, we shouldn't have to be required to read a 30 page legal document every time Sony decides to patch a bug in their software.

        • by tixxit ( 1107127 )
          Seriously. If I could just diff old-eula.txt new-eula.txt I'd be as happy as a pig in poop. Instead, I'm supposed to re-read the mammoth PSN EULA every other month.
    • by Anonymous Coward

      Can't be that bad, your soul belongs to Apple, your personal info to facebook and your creditcard-number to SONY.

  • Insurance (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Tsingi ( 870990 ) <graham.rick@gmai[ ]om ['l.c' in gap]> on Friday May 06, 2011 @08:17AM (#36046104)
    If I understand this correctly, Sony will sell you insurance to the tune that, if doing business with them gets you ripped off, you get reimbursed?
    And a year for free!
    I have the lifetime policy, I don't do business with them.
  • They learned from their break-in. Now, Sony gets 10% of any revenue gained from the stealing of identities from their service. The finance team wouldn't let them lose this opportunity.

  • by richy freeway ( 623503 ) on Friday May 06, 2011 @08:21AM (#36046146)
    It looks awfully like an American company for American users. What about the rest of the world?

    Not that I care as I don't own anything made by Sony.
    • by Anonymous Coward

      The bloomberg article is pretty specific that it is for US customers only. Kind of a nice double-fuck-you for customers from the rest of the world. At least they are making sure I'm never even going to consider buying a Sony product or game again, the way they treat this issue.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      The rest of the world doesn't need identity theft insurance, as banks are liable when they fuck up.

    • The rest of the world doesn't dish out credit to anyone who walks in and gives them a name and address, surely? Isn't that just an American tradition?

      Why not click the link to [] from the article and make the obvious change to the url (say to []) to see if other regions are offering something similar if you are so curious? Why would expect an article written to an American audience would do that for you?

  • Yeah I trust SONY......
    Might as well just post my CC# on 4chan

  • Judging by the negative reactions already, I wonder.. what should SONY do?

    Right now they're offering all sorts of stuff that usually isn't offered at all. You get a small post on a website or in (a) major newspaper(s) at best that tells you there was a breach, oopsie, and go contact your credit card issuer if you think that's a Bad Thing.

    But clearly doing more than most other businesses do, isn't good enough.

    So what should SONY do?

    Viable options only, please. "Die in a fire" and "pay me $1M" and such I'm

    • The executives should all commit seppuku. I won't believe they're sorry until they spill their fucking guts.
    • by node 3 ( 115640 )

      Judging by the negative reactions already, I wonder.. what should SONY do?

      You're new here, aren't you?

      Viable options only, please. "Die in a fire" and "pay me $1M" and such I'm gonna guess aren't viable - solid arguments as to why they would be are welcomed nevertheless, they might yield a +5 Funny if nothing else.

      Well, that answers my previous question...

      The only thing Sony could do to please the haters is become a 100% open source Linux company, and even that's a long shot. Sony has raised the religious ire of the nerds, and only complete repentance and conversion, or ceasing to exist altogether, will suffice. Such are the non-negotiable demands of religious crusaders.

      So what Sony should do is completely ignore the peanut gallery and simply do right by their *actual* customers. Catering

  • Freeze your credit (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Jason Levine ( 196982 ) on Friday May 06, 2011 @08:53AM (#36046414) Homepage

    As a victim of Identity Theft, I'd recommend to the people impacted by the Sony debacle (or any other ID breach) to freeze your credit. It costs (in New York, varies in other states) $5 per credit company per person. There are 3 major companies, thus $15 per person. Of course, this fee might be waived if you are a victim of ID theft. Details (and state specific fees) can be found here:

    Once frozen, nobody can check your credit or open new lines of credit. If you need to allow this action (e.g. because you are buying a car or applying for a job which requires a background check), you can temporarily unfreeze your credit. You can even specify who the temporary unfreeze applies to and for how long. (For example, "Friendly Car Loans can read my credit file from May 6th through May 20th.")

    Of course, the credit bureaus don't like you freezing your credit because it means you can't sign up for those "Save 5% on your purchase by opening a credit card with us today" store cards. It also means they can't sell your credit information to other companies. But, honestly, those negatives for them are just more pluses for us.

    • You have to spend money to temporarily lift the freeze. This is just a moneymaking proposal. Further, in California people over the age of 65 get half off the fees. Fuck that, they're about to die anyway, *I* have my life ahead of me.

      • I agree that it's a moneymaking scheme. I believe, at one time, there was a federal law in the works that would let people freeze their credit for free, but the credit companies "convinced" the politicians that this was a bad idea. After all, if the credit companies seem to think it's their god-given right to sell your credit information to whomever they want, whenever they want and any law that makes it easy for people to say "don't do that" infringes on their "right to profit."

      • Just to clarify (after double-checking), you don't always need to spend money to temporarily lift the freeze. If you are a victim of ID theft, then many states will let you freeze/thaw for free. Of course, state laws vary. If your state requires $$$ for temporary thaws, contact your state representatives and demand that they make it free. If enough people do this, we can push back against the credit companies who would love to see roadblocks put in place against people freezing their credit.

        On the other

      • In some states, you have to spend money to temporarily lift a freeze. In Tennessee, for example, placing and permanently removing a freeze costs money, but a temporary lift is free. At any rate, how much credit are you applying for that means you need to lift the freeze constantly?

        A security freeze is vastly superior to a monitoring service. With the freeze, damage is prevented because the credit report is inaccessible to the creditor -- who isn't likely to open an account if they can't check the credit of

    • by Anonymous Coward
      Why should you have to pay for this? What did these credit bureaus do to get the right to collect all this information on you? Can I start calling up banks, say I'm from CreditMojo and ask for credit information on all their customers?
    • by joost ( 87285 )

      Thank you for this information. Why is not everyone doing this all the time? Seems like a useful thing to request for negligible cost.

      • Partly because it is a hassle when you need to thaw your credit. You need to think ahead and contact the appropriate agencies to thaw things out. Of course, it is a much bigger hassle to fix your credit if someone steals your identity. The other part, not to sound like a conspiracy theorist, is the credit companies. They *want* you to sign up for credit cards on impulse and they *want* to be able to give your credit information to anyone with a fist full of cash. Freezing your credit keeps this from ha

    • by alexo ( 9335 )

      Is there similar info for Canada?

      • I tried looking up some, but couldn't find anything. You might try searching Experian's Canandian website or something.

    • It should be free as stated in Sony's e-mail:

      - We have also provided names and contact information for the three major U.S.
      credit bureaus below. At no charge, U.S. residents can have these credit bureaus
      place a "fraud alert" on your file that alerts creditors to take additional steps
      to verify your identity prior to granting credit in your name. This service can
      make it more difficult for someone to get credit in your name. Note, however,
      that because it tells creditors to follow certain procedures to protect

      • Fraud alerts are different than credit freezes. Fraud alerts are flags in the system that say "something fishy may or may not be going on with this account, you should check before opening lines of credit." However, actually complying with them is voluntary. Someone can still bypass the fraud alert and ruin your credit.

        Security freezes completely lock out new lines of credit from forming. Nobody, not even you, can open up new credit lines until you've thawed your credit. There is no way around this. (Y

  • I know... this is old but simply needs to be repeated until people "get it." ID theft is, at the very least, a misnomer and in my opinion an outright lie.

    What this all boils down to is data that can be used to access accounts with banks and lenders. They created this insecure system for THEIR convenience. Now they are calling all that data "your identity" and when someone exploits their system, it is "YOU" who are the victim somehow. This is insanity. There was a great video about identity theft and th

    • Mitchell & Webb: []

    • I'll reply to you with a spin on our favorite theme.

      It's not identity theft... wait for it ... it's identity *INFRINGEMENT!*

      No one can strip you of your identity right? (Certain prisons excepted.)

      They are ... COPYING your identity! Your identity is your (ongoing) original creative work that no one can duplicate right?

      So all personal details are "derivative works" of your identity!

      This goes for credit cards, maybe SS #, and a lot of other things.

      You "lease" Sony your card info ... so if they get hacked, they

      • No. Just doesn't fly.

        The fact is, this "key information" is being used as a "key" to gain access to resources. This same "key information" is being used to assign liability for the ab/use of these resources. The personally identifiable information is copyable, true. But it is used to gain access to things that shouldn't be accessible. This has no similarity to copyright infringement. And if it did, then we are not the owners of our "copyrightable information" then are we as we do not have the right to

  • by Anonymous Coward

    I see their only offering this to the people of Northen America, what about us in Europe.

  • by residieu ( 577863 ) on Friday May 06, 2011 @09:45AM (#36046880)

    So will they be up and running by June 18th so we can sign up?

    And will this be one of those "Free for one year, and then we'll start charging you $20 a month unless you remember to cancel", type things?

    • by Kagato ( 116051 )

      I've had this happen twice before. In both cases there was no charge once the service expired. It just stopped working.

  • I'm not a PSN member, but after the Sony Rootkit Scandal [] I would be very reluctant with any software offered by Sony.
  • In some reports, there were 77 million people's credit information stolen, but Sony is only setting aside 1 million dollars. Sony must be getting a really good deal on this credit monitoring they are giving out. That or they don't expect very many people to sign up for it. Sorry, it was only for the first 100,000 customers, you are out of luck.
    • Actually, it's a million dollars of insurance per customer. Of course, they're paying far less than a million per customer for that insurance, as the security company knows the average customer is going to cost them far less than that.
  • My first thought when seeing yet another tale of mass identity theft is, why this is still happening so often? There are good solutions to security (I haven't seen any major banks hacked, have you?) and there's no damned reason why every business on the Net needs to store enough personal information on me to destroy my credit either. What will it take to give businesses or government (if they could be bothered to do any favors for the bottom 99% of us) the incentive to stop allowing this?

    My second thou
    • Name and address should not be enough to ruin your credit. The worst of the worst is someone using your credit card number fraudulently. It's a big deal, but I think the cries of rampant identity theft are a little overzealous. My government ID card has my SSAN printed on it, along with my name, and I find the potential loss of this piece of plastic to be much more devastating than Sony accidentally loosing information that you could find on a people search website for a nominal fee.

  • ...Sony discovers a way to profit off of the data theft of its customers by upselling services after a 1 year trial with two of its business partners.

    Sony business practices are brilliantly Machiavellian.

  • This is Sony's fault. They should take every CC number they have, go to Visa, Discover, or MC and say. "We've had an epic data breach and we need to protect our customers. These are their card numbers. Please bill us." If they can't go directly to Visa or MC, then the first several digits encodes the issuing bank. They should then go to that bank and repeat the request fro the customers of that bank.

    • by Tomahawk ( 1343 )


      It would also be nice if they offered us some way of finding out what data they had for each of us too. I couldn't remember which email address I used to sign up (found out, and luckily I don't use that email address for anything else), I don't know if the credit card details they have for me are valid, if they have my address, name, etc. And I can't login to the network to find out.

    • How about you let me request a new card, instead of my card being declined at dinner because some company told Visa that my card was possibly stolen. Sounds like a great denial of service opportunity.

      No thanks.

  • So does that make Debix a prime suspect for the hack? They are suddenly getting a large number of customers locked into their service.
  • "...A program for U.S. PlayStation Network and Qriocity customers..."

    Hopefully they will do the same for the rest of the world too.

  • First the offer free identity theft, then they offer to help you monitor it for free! Sony's really pulling out all of the stops.

  • They said all I had to provide was my PSN login ID, full name, address, phone number, credit card number, credit expiration date, credit card security code, mother's maiden name, social security number, router WEP2 password, bank account number, recent photo graph, times when I would not be home, locations of my valuables, and high res photograph of my house key.

This process can check if this value is zero, and if it is, it does something child-like. -- Forbes Burkowski, CS 454, University of Washington