Due to the PlayStation Network breach last month and the subsequent outage that took place, Sony has already lost billions in stocks. Estimates released earlier this month calculated that loss to be over US$ 2 billion. As Sony has recently revealed, the cost to rebuild the PSN won't be small change either.
According to gaming news site Joystiq, Sony estimates that it will have to spend somewhere around US$ 171 million for the PSN's restoration. This info was revealed by the company during the lead-up to its fiscal year 2010 earnings report which will take place on Thursday.
That estimate includes "the current estimated cost of the personal information theft protection program for our customers. This program includes a set amount of insurance to cover a certain amount of identity theft losses that may be incurred by our customers in certain regions within a set period with respect to misuse of their personal information. To date, however, we have not confirmed such misuse of personal information."
Also included in the figure are costs associated with Sony's Welcome Back program, security enhancement, legal and expert costs, and impact on profits "due to a possible future revenue decrease."
That's just a conservative estimate too, as the Sony call script also mentions that it could still balloon if there are any confirmed reports of customer identity theft issues or credit card misuse arising from the breach. "Those are key variables," reads the script, "and if that changes, the costs could change."
The call script also mentions the class action suits Sony is currently facing, although it notes that "those are all at a preliminary stage, so we are not able to include the possible outcome of any of them in our results forecast for the fiscal year ending March 2012 at this moment."