http://www.timesofindia.com/articleshow.asp?art_id=473172674 AFP THURSDAY, JANUARY 24, 2002 TOKYO: Japan's Sony issued a warning on Thursday after finding a software problem in a popular range of computers that could expose around 900,000 customers to attacks from hackers. "(We) have discovered a security issue in voice audial integrated operation software... that is pre-installed in some models of VAIO computers," the entertainment giant said in a statement. No-one has complained of a security breach yet, but one tech-savy customer alerted Sony to a possible problem with the software in its purple-coloured VAIO computers. "There is a danger that say a hacker wrote a computer code and put it into an email... it could possibly get through VAIO computer security, go to the hard disk and re-write or copy private documents," Sony spokeswoman Merran Wrigley said. Customers using Version 3.0 or Version 3.1 software were advised to download a special program from Sony's homepage to render their computer secure. "Even though we haven't had any complaints we felt it was an important issue to address so we made the announcement and at the same time we offered the solution," said Wrigley. Sony, which has sold 900,000 VAIO desktops and laptops worldwide that carry the software -- 890,000 in Japan -- hoped its hasty response to the problem would prevent denting consumer confidence. "You have to be very open when you find a security issue that needs to be addressed. Hopefully there won't be a negative backlash," Wrigley said. The firm had enjoyed strong sales of its VAIO computers, which allow users to listen to music, watch television and access the Internet from a very compact machine. "In fiscal 2000 (to March 2001) we sold 2.5 million VAIO computers globally and this year we have projected sales of 3.9 million," said the spokeswoman. The computers come in a range of prices from around 120,000 yen-to-300,000 yen ($895-to-2,240). Sony is due to announce its earnings for the third quarter to December on Friday. - ISN is currently hosted by Attrition.org To unsubscribe email majordomoat_private with 'unsubscribe isn' in the BODY of the mail.
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