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The hackers that cracked into Sony’s online gaming network, the Playstation Network (PSN), are plotting another attack against the gaming giant this weekend and plan to publicize information stolen from PSN users, said a reader who viewed the hackers’ online discussions.

An anonymous reader observed the hackers, known as Anonymous, plotting the next attack in an Internet Relay Channel frequented by the hackers that originally broke into the PSN. Sony was forced to bring the network down after the intrusion, which resulted in the hackers stealing information from more than 100 million PSN and users. The next attack is said to be in retaliation for how Sony handled the situation, according to tech news publication CNET.

Sony laid indirect blame for the intrusion and PSN outage on the hacktivist group Anonymous yesterday, saying that its defenses were down while it fended off a denial of service attack by Anonymous, which left the doors open for other hackers to come in and steal sensitive information. The hacker group said today it is not responsible for the theft of sensitive information and credit card data from the PSN.

The reader didn’t indicate whether the hackers plotting a third attack were the same as the ones that initially broke into the PSN. But the hackers said they still had access to Sony’s PSN servers, the reader said. (That’s hard to understand, since the network is still down). That might be because Sony was running outdated versions of Apache’s web server software that did not have a firewall and was left unpatched, Purdue University security expert Dr. Gene Spafford said in a testimony to Congress.

After being quiet for several weeks, Sony finally announced today that it is in the final stages of internal testing and will bring the PSN back online soon. Sony didn’t give any kind of time frame, but it’s more information the company has given to its 77 million registered users in a long time. The company has been uncharacteristically silent throughout the whole ordeal, which has led to a lot of criticism and spurred the company to deliver an epic apology to its PSN users and the general public.

The PlayStation Network is a critical service that competes with Microsoft’s Xbox Live online gaming service — as well as other online gaming services. There are also 948 games now available in the PlayStation Network store, as well as 4,000 pieces of add-on content for games. You can find a timeline for the Playstation Network outage and credit card information theft scandal here, courtesy of VentureBeat’s gaming guru Dean Takahashi.

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