Sony bans PSN gamers from class-action lawsuits


Sony has introduced new terms and conditions for its PlayStation Network (PSN), designed to stop gamers filing class-action lawsuits against the company.

It follows numerous attempts to sue the company after the notorious hacks on Sony, which saw over 100 million users' data compromised.

Users wanting to access PSN will have to agree to the new T&Cs from this Thursday, effectively waiving the right to collectively sue it over data breaches.

What we think...

"The fact that Sony has taken this significant step suggests one thing: it knows how damaging class-action lawsuits relating to the hacks could be.

This will do nothing to appease angry gamers, however, some of whom will feel their patience has been exhausted. It will certainly not do wonders for Sony's reputation either, which took a hit following the attacks."Tom Brewster, Senior Staff Writer

"Any Dispute Resolution Proceedings, whether in arbitration or court, will be conducted only on an individual basis and not in a class or representative action or as a named or unnamed member in a class, consolidated, representative or private attorney general action," the T&Cs read.

Gamers will be allowed to take Sony to court on an individual basis and have the option to back out of the agreement after 30 days.

Those who wish to opt-out of the class-action clause will have to send their request via letter to Sony's California headquarters.

Sony had a torrid time earlier this year. Outside of the PSN hit, a number of its websites were hacked. The company scrambled to make amends for the security problems, offering some small apologetic gifts, including games.

The company also recently appointed its first ever chief information security officer.

It will be hoping to avoid any class-action lawsuit, especially since one of its insurers recently claimed it should not be liable for losses related to the hacks in April.

Zurich American Insurance went to court in New York in July hoping for a decision declaring it would not have to pay out for anything related to the attacks.

Tom Brewster

Tom Brewster is currently an associate editor at Forbes and an award-winning journalist who covers cyber security, surveillance, and privacy. Starting his career at ITPro as a staff writer and working up to a senior staff writer role, Tom has been covering the tech industry for more than ten years and is considered one of the leading journalists in his specialism.

He is a proud alum of the University of Sheffield where he secured an undergraduate degree in English Literature before undertaking a certification from General Assembly in web development.