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Sony says that hackers may have stolen the personal details of an extra 24.6 million users after an intrusion at Sony Online Entertainment, or SOE, its multiplayer online gaming service.
Sony has warned of a second big security breach, saying that hackers may have stolen the personal details of 24.6 million multiplayer online game users, including passwords, names, addresses and credit card information.
This is on top of the 77 million users who the company admitted last week may have had their personal data stolen after the PlayStation Network was hacked.
The latest data theft is connected not with PlayStation, but rather it affects accounts registered with Sony Online Entertainment, or SOE, that company’s popular multiplayer online gaming service.
Sony said that hackers may have stolen about 12,700 credit card or debit card numbers from countries outside the United States, as well as 10,700 direct debit records of users in Austria, Germany, the Netherlands and Spain.
An ongoing investigation by Sony revealed that the latest attack by hackers may have occurred on April 16 and 17, earlier than the PlayStation breach which occurred from April 17-19, the company said.
The latest data hack is another setback for Sony, with the bad news coming just days after executives with the Japanese company apologized to gamers and promised a security overhaul of its PlayStation Network.
As a result of the security breach, Sony has temporarily shut its service to multiplayer online games available on personal computers, Facebook and PlayStation 2. Sony said it will give players an extra 30 days on their subscriptions, plus one day for each day the system is down.
Sony’s most popular games include DC Universe Online, Free Realms, EverQuest and EverQuest II.
"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," the company said in a statement released on its website.
“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."
The company’s PlayStation Network has been unavailable since April 20, and the company has previously said that it would be up and running again this week.
A Sony spokesperson told The Associated Press that there was no evidence that the personal information stolen in the latest hack had been used illegally for financial gain.