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Sony weaves security blanket for PS2 gamers

Industry Standard

By Elinor Abreu

(IDG) -- Sony Computer Entertainment announced Wednesday that it will use technology from encryption software leader RSA Security to protect the privacy and security of PlayStation 2 users.

Under a partnership with AOL, future versions of Sony's PlayStation 2 will be entertainment devices in addition to videogame consoles, with Web browsing, e-mail and instant-messaging functions. Sony also has teamed with RealNetworks to include streaming-media software in the PlayStation 2.

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The RSA software, a popular encryption technology, will be embedded in the PlayStation 2 and be included in software development tool kits for the console. The software will secure all data transmitted online during gaming and other entertainment activities, including Web browsing and e-commerce transactions. The software also will protect data that is stored on the PlayStation 2's hard disk drive.

"Security is one of the most important issues in the networking business," Shinichi Okamoto, senior VP and chief technology officer at Tokyo-based Sony Computer Entertainment, said in a statement. With the RSA deal, Sony "can provide our customers with a highly secure network for both content distribution and trusted online communication."

Touting security could help Sony wage its battle against Microsoft and Nintendo for the estimated $6 billion videogame market. In November, Microsoft plans to release its Xbox game console and Nintendo will release Gamecube.

• PlayStation
• RealNetworks

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