Sony’s Data Breach Could Hit Visa and Mastercard Hard

The recent breach of Sony Corp’s customer data, including credit card data, could wind up costing credit card companies as much as $300 Million.  Of course this pales in comparison the $1.5 Billion analysts are saying the breach will end up costing Sony Corp. Hackers compromised the Sony system in early April, and gathered the information of some 77 million customers, “possibly” including their credit card details.
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Either way, $300 million is no small change, and the biggest losers would likely be VISA and Mastercard, as they have the largest market share among the credit card issuers.  American Express and Discover could also be affected, but to a lesser extent.  The $300 million estimate is based on a large percentage of the customers affected by the breach actually request new credit cards to replace their potentially breached cards.  Of course not all people were likely compromised, and a lot of people are too lazy to bother replacing them, or they don’t even know about the breach.

Analysts say that each credit card replacement request costs the credit card companies anywhere from $3 to $5 per card, including the cost of the plastic, the customer service labor, and the mailing costs.  In addition to the actual replacement costs, credit card companies could lose out on additional revenue, lost due to the time it takes the card to get to the customer, and the time to activate the card.  This will result in less spending by consumers during this time, or they’ll shift to a different card.

Most of the card companies have declined to comment on the breach or the costs of replacement cards.  American Express said they had no indication that any cardmembers data was compromised, but they would be happy to replace any customers card.

Five Ways Sony Can Repay Customers For The PSN Outage/Data Breach
Forbes (blog), on Fri, 29 Apr 2011 11:42:15 -0700

Whatever the case, if you were one of the 70+ million PlayStation Network subscribers affected by the recent outage and data breach, then you know that it’s not always easy to forgive and forget. Right now,Sony (NYSE: SNE) is having a horrible year. 


Sony Assures Customers That PlayStation Network Game Data Is Safe
International Business Times, on Fri, 29 Apr 2011 11:33:09 -0700

PSN subscribers have overwhelmed Sony with questions over whether their game data, trophies, and PS+ cloud saves were affected by the recent breach of the company’s server. Fortunately for them, Sonyassessment is that all of that data is intact and 


Governments press Sony about PlayStation breach
CNET, on Fri, 29 Apr 2011 11:21:51 -0700

Yesterday the Law and Regulations Commission of the city of Taipei, Taiwan said it sent a letter to Sony asking for a full run-down of how the personal information and possibly credit card data of its PlayStation Network customers was compromised. 


2.2 million PSN credit card numbers for sale?
GameSpot, on Fri, 29 Apr 2011 11:15:33 -0700

What we heard: Yesterday, Sony announced that even though some 77 million PlayStation Network’s personal information may have been compromised during last week’s data breach, their credit card information was encrypted. This account appeared to be 


Sony-Gate: PR Machine in Full Swing After Greatest Data Heist in History
Wall Street Daily, on Fri, 29 Apr 2011 11:11:45 -0700

For one brief moment this week, video gamers using Sony’s (NYSE: SNE) PlayStation tossed down their controllers and angrily hit the tech blogs and news sites. The cause of their ire was an email on Tuesday, warning about a massive security breach of 


Bono Mack to hold data-theft hearing
The Hill (blog), on Fri, 29 Apr 2011 11:10:56 -0700

has scheduled a hearing on data theft in the aftermath of a massive security breach to Sony’s PlayStation Network that allowed hackers to access the private information of account holders. Bono Mack, chairwoman of the Energy and Commerce subcommittee