Sony has announced that it will add two-factor authentication to PlayStation Network accounts in a bid to boost security five years to the day after a major hack brought down the network.
In a statement provided to Polygon today, a spokesperson said, “In order to further safeguard our users and their accounts, we are preparing to offer a 2-step verification feature.”
The representative did not provide a timeframe for implementation of the feature but added that “more details will be shared at a later date.”
PlayStation 3 users noted yesterday that when they entered incorrect login information, the system referred to two-factor verification. The relevant message only appeared for those who downloaded firmware update 4.80 and the feature isn’t currently available for PlayStation Network accounts. These accounts work across PlayStation 4, PlayStation 3, PlayStation Vita, PlayStation Portable, the PlayStation mobile app, and the web.
Two-factor authentication/two-step verification requires users to enter two different codes when accessing a service. This generally involves a code you already know, typically your existing login information, and a second code sent to your phone. A six-digit code received via text message or generated by a mobile app is then sent to your phone. This is more secure than a standalone password as it would require someone accessing your account to also have access to your phone.
The attack five years ago forced Sony to shut down the entire network for 23 days and potentially resulted in the reveal of personal information on up to 77 million accounts users at the time.
Yesterday, new reports emerged about Sony’s plans for an upgraded PS4 codenamed NEO.