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APRIL 2011: PLAYSTATION OWNER’S BEWARE, SECURITY BREACH

PLAYSTATION NETWORK announced a security breach by an unknown source this week.  They sent the below email to all users warning of the dangers of the unauthorized intruder’s. It is probably causing withdrawals for many (including myself) especially when it comes to playing popular games on-line like Call of Duty and Grand Theft Auto (which I love).

According to the email posted below, Sony took precautionary measures by shutting down the network, to protect user’s.  It was sent at a great time, because I had just received an email from Hotmail requesting my personal information to avoid a shutdown.  I’m glad I ignored the request!

If you receive a request for personal information, take precautions to avoid a scam.  Everyone should own a Playstation game, it is the best out there and the games rock!
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EMAIL SENT FROM SONY

PlayStation(R)Network

===================================

Valued PlayStation(R)Network/Qriocity Customer:

We have discovered that between April 17 and April 19, 2011,
certain PlayStation Network and Qriocity service user account
information was compromised in connection with an illegal and
unauthorized intrusion into our network. In response to this
intrusion, we have:

1) Temporarily turned off PlayStation Network and Qriocity services;

2) Engaged an outside, recognized security firm to conduct a full
and complete investigation into what happened; and

3) Quickly taken steps to enhance security and strengthen our
network infrastructure by rebuilding our system to provide you
with greater protection of your personal information.

We greatly appreciate your patience, understanding and goodwill
as we do whatever it takes to resolve these issues as quickly and
efficiently as practicable.

Although we are still investigating the details of this incident,
we believe that an unauthorized person has obtained the following
information that you provided: name, address (city, state, zip), country,
email address, birthdate, PlayStation Network/Qriocity password and login,
and handle/PSN online ID. It is also possible that your profile data,
including purchase history and billing address (city, state, zip),
and your PlayStation Network/Qriocity password security answers may
have been obtained. If you have authorized a sub-account for your
dependent, the same data with respect to your dependent may have
been obtained. While there is no evidence at this time that credit
card data was taken, we cannot rule out the possibility. If you have
provided your credit card data through PlayStation Network or Qriocity,
out of an abundance of caution we are advising you that your credit
card number (excluding security code) and expiration date may have
been obtained.

For your security, we encourage you to be especially aware of email,
telephone and postal mail scams that ask for personal or sensitive
information. Sony will not contact you in any way, including by email,
asking for your credit card number, social security number or other
personally identifiable information. If you are asked for this information,
you can be confident Sony is not the entity asking. When the PlayStation
Network and Qriocity services are fully restored, we strongly recommend that
you log on and change your password. Additionally, if you use your PlayStation
Network or Qriocity user name or password for other unrelated services or
accounts, we strongly recommend that you change them as well.

To protect against possible identity theft or other financial loss, we
encourage you to remain vigilant, to review your account statements and
to monitor your credit reports. We are providing the following information
for those who wish to consider it:
– U.S. residents are entitled under U.S. law to one free credit report annually
from each of the three major credit bureaus. To order your free credit report,
visit http://www.annualcreditreport.com or call toll-free (877) 322-8228.

– 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 you,
it also may delay your ability to obtain credit while the agency verifies your
identity. As soon as one credit bureau confirms your fraud alert, the others
are notified to place fraud alerts on your file. Should you wish to place a
fraud alert, or should you have any questions regarding your credit report,
please contact any one of the agencies listed below:

Experian: 888-397-3742; http://www.experian.com; P.O. Box 9532, Allen, TX 75013
Equifax: 800-525-6285; http://www.equifax.com; P.O. Box 740241, Atlanta, GA 30374-0241
TransUnion: 800-680-7289; http://www.transunion.com; Fraud Victim Assistance Division,
P.O. Box 6790, Fullerton, CA 92834-6790

– You may wish to visit the website of the U.S. Federal Trade Commission at
http://www.consumer.gov/idtheft or reach the FTC at 1-877-382-4357 or 600 Pennsylvania
Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20580 for further information about how to protect
yourself from identity theft. Your state Attorney General may also have advice
on preventing identity theft, and you should report instances of known or
suspected identity theft to law enforcement, your State Attorney General,
and the FTC. For North Carolina residents, the Attorney General can be
contacted at 9001 Mail Service Center, Raleigh, NC 27699-9001; telephone
(877) 566-7226; or http://www.ncdoj.gov. For Maryland residents, the Attorney
General can be contacted at 200 St. Paul Place, 16th Floor, Baltimore, MD 21202;
telephone: (888) 743-0023; or http://www.oag.state.md.us.

We thank you for your patience as we complete our investigation of this
incident, and we regret any inconvenience. Our teams are working around the
clock on this, and services will be restored as soon as possible. Sony takes
information protection very seriously and will continue to work to ensure that
additional measures are taken to protect personally identifiable information.
Providing quality and secure entertainment services to our customers is
our utmost priority. Please contact us at 1-800-345-7669 should you have any
additional questions.

Sincerely,

Sony Computer Entertainment and Sony Network Entertainment

 
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Posted by on April 28, 2011 in HEADLINE NEWS

 

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MY CALL OF DUTY VIOLENT EXPERIENCE

While playing my Call of Duty game online last night, I had my first “gay bashing experience”. It would have never occurred to me, to happen while playing a game, but it did.  As a straight woman, married for nearly twelve years, it did not seem possible, for me to be the target.

It was an hour into my game, when I came across players using the Bluetooth device, players use to chat while playing on-line.  It was going fine, until an older man, joined our game.  As we played, I heard him shouting homosexual slurs, and thought he was talking to someone in his house.  He cursed, used  derogatory phrases, and the most offensive language I had ever heard.  This went on for a while, and then I realized he was screaming them each time I spoke.  “That’s strange”, I thought to myself, and after it happened several times, I realized he was targeting me.  “Are you talking to me”, I said to the very angry man.  He confirmed he was, and boy was I surprised.  I was so upset, it caused me to begin defending myself, as though I were gay, during his long rant.  He apparently thought I was a gay man, probably due to my raspy voice.  In the end, he left the game, but I was left feeling insulted and humiliated.  I now sincerely understand, what many homosexuals must feel, when they are targeted.

This experience opened my eyes to the deep hatred, some have toward gay people.  It also made me think about others who are chastised, for various things like; being overweight, physically or mentally challenged, the unpopular child in school or anyone, who is not considered “the norm”.

So to all the unique individuals out there, this is for you.  As Pink would say, “Raise your glass if you’re wrong in all the right ways”.  Her new song is dedicated to those who are viewed as misfits, and we thank her for that.  The next time you decide to chastise someone, for anything at all, remember it can happen to you.

 
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Posted by on January 9, 2011 in Britta's SCOOP

 

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IS CALL OF DUTY for Kids?

Call of Duty Rocks!

I have been off a full week, and got completely hooked on my new Call of Duty game.  During my long hours of playing the game, it made me realize what many kids are doing in their spare time now.  With the on-online option, I ended up playing with many of our younger generation.  They are so excited to be involved in war, and seem addicted to playing, which may be trouble.

Most have headphones which allows us all to hear them during gameplay.  It amazes me what they say during the breaks, and it typically has nothing to do with the game.  Some sound as young as ten years old, and talk about sex and other very “grown-up” things.  They curse, eat, and make very inappropriate comments, which makes me wonder where there parents are.  Do they know what they are saying?  Why would they have bought a child under 18 years old this game?

If you  purchased a Call of Duty game for your kids, spend an hour in their room, and see if it was the right choice.  I can assure you, this may make you think twice about your decision.  It really is not appropriate for kids, and whatever happened to them playing outside or with their friends.

One final note; I still consider it the best game of all time, but just not for kids.

 
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Posted by on January 3, 2011 in Britta's SCOOP

 

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CALL OF DUTY Black Ops-BEST GAME OF THE DECADE!

Call of Duty - Rocks!

Well, although I am clearly over the age of 18, but I still received Call of Duty for Christmas.  And most should know, it is definitely NOT designed for kids. 

I know what you’re saying, “how could this adult woman enjoy this game so much” well…the ingenious way they have produced this game is for starters.  But to add to it, offering players the ability to share their gaming experience on-line, makes it my TOP PICK of all times!  It is incredible and will get you hooked in the first hour. This game works for teens and adults, so the hype it caused was right on the money.

It has some violence, but is so clear and real it makes it a blast to play.  I have played for hours, and the fact that it has several varieties of games, will never allow you to get bored.  My very favorite is the Free For All option, where each of the games change, keeping it exciting and entertaining. 

Not sure if this is the wave of the future, but if this keeps up, kids will never need to see each other in person again.  They can play games from remote locations, text each other, or send an email.  Gotta go, so I can get my game on!

 
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Posted by on December 30, 2010 in Britta's Picks/New on the scene

 

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