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Stringer pledges $1m identity theft insurance policy

PSN undergoing "final stages of internal testing" but still no date for return

Sony president and CEO Howard Stringer has written a letter directly to PlayStation Network users, in which he has announced a new $1 million identity theft insurance policy for each customer.

Writing on the official PlayStation Blog, Stringer apologised to customers for the ongoing problems and pledged a $1 million insurance policy per user - which came into effect on May 5. Although he emphasised again that, "there is no confirmed evidence any credit card or personal information has been misused".

"I know some believe we should have notified our customers earlier than we did. It's a fair question. As soon as we discovered the potential scope of the intrusion, we shut down the PlayStation Network and Qriocity services and hired some of the best technical experts in the field to determine what happened," he said.

"I wish we could have gotten the answers we needed sooner, but forensic analysis is a complex, time-consuming process. Hackers, after all, do their best to cover their tracks, and it took some time for our experts to find those tracks and begin to identify what personal information had - or had not - been taken."

Unlike Kaz Hirai's recent statement to congress, Stringer made no reference to hacker collective Anonymous. He also made no specific commitment as to when the services would become available again.

However, a subsequent blog post from senior director of corporate communications & social media Patrick Seybold indicated that Sony was in the "final stages of internal testing of the new system, an important step towards restoring PlayStation Network and Qriocity services".

"We understand that many of you are eager to again enjoy the PlayStation Network and Qriocity entertainment services that you love, so we wanted you to be aware of this milestone and our progress. We will provide additional updates as soon as we can," said Seybold.

There was still no indication of exactly when the services would resume, despite earlier indications that there would be a gradual return this week.

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