PlayStation Users' Credit Card Numbers Exposed

77 million accounts compromised

Sony Corp. shut down its PlayStation network after it admitted that the credit card data for thousands of users may have been stolen.  While Sony says it has no direct evidence that credit card information was taken, it cannot rule it out, either.

Some PlayStation users are complaining that Sony knew of the breach a week ago, but failed to warn consumers. Sony says when it became aware of a hack last week, it brought in investigators to determine the scope of the problem. When the company determined that consumer’s data was compromised, Sony informed users.

The scale of the breach is staggering, according to industry experts, and could cost the company billions of dollars.

"Simply put, one of the worst breaches we've seen in several years," said Josh Shaul, chief technology officer for Application Security Inc., a New York-based company that is one of the country's largest database security software makers.

Sony says it has taken steps to rebuild its system, to provide greater protection for personal information.  Sony said it has also issued warnings to users to contact credit agencies, and has set up fraud alerts.

If you wish to set a fraud alert on your credit report, go to the Federal Trade Commission.

Check out more from Liz Crenshaw's Consumer Watch.  Ask Liz a question by clicking here.  You can also follow her on Twitter and Facebook.

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