Sony settles with 40 more states in rootkit debacle
Chicago (IL) - Nearing the end of a year full of lawsuits, product recalls, and production problems for Sony, the electronics manufacturer has now settled with 40 states, nearing an end to the legal battles as a result of the inclusion of anti-copying software in its music CDs, which led some consumers to unknowingly open their computers to malicious attacks.
In addition to settling a civil class action lawsuit on the issue, nearly each of the 50 states went after Sony’s music division, Sony BMG, after it concealed anti-copying software in its music CDs, which prevented users from excessively ripping tracks onto their computer, but also opened a security hole that hackers were easily able to exploit.
Earlier this month, Sony announced settlements with California and Texas, and now has almost put the lid on the whole thing with similar deals with 40 additional states, including New York, Michigan, Alaska, as well as the District of Columbia.
In addition to paying affected consumers up to $175 each, Sony will need to shell out $4.25 million to settle the latest entourage of legal battles.
The rootkit ordeal was just one of many headaches for Sony this year, with a massive battery recall and production problems with the PS3, the delay of Blu-ray, the uphill battle in the portable game console market and a slowly dying UMD format for movies adding to the company’s aggravation.