Stringer apologizes to Sony shareholders for personal data security breach - insists online remains at core of company strategy

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Stringer's compensation down on last year - but not as much as Sony stock


TOKYO – Howard Stringer apologized to Sony shareholders at their annual meeting in Tokyo today for the PlayStation Networks data leaks, but insisted online content was still at the heart of the company’s strategy.


Stringer described the gamers on the PlayStation Network as “very loyal” and said most of them had returned despite the hacking which compromised personal data from over 100 million accounts.


Sony had been targeted because it “tried to protect our IP, our content” suggested Stringer.


A record 8,360 shareholders attended the meeting where it was disclosed that Stringer’s compensation package was down from last year to 345 million yen ($4.27 million) in salary and bonuses, plus 518 million yen in stock options.


In the previous fiscal year Stringer received 410 million yen in salary and bonuses, although the strong yen which hurts Sony’s exports will boost the value of Stringer’s pay when he takes it overseas.


Sony stock has lost nearly a third of its value this year as March’s disaster in Japan continues to take its toll.


While Stringer had to apologize for a massive online security breach, across town at a stormy TEPCO (Tokyo Electric Power Company) shareholder meeting, senior executives were bowing their heads to acknowledge their responsibility for the nuclear disaster at the Fukushima Dai-ichi Power Plant.


A large number of major corporations in Japan hold shareholder meetings on the same day to help avoid disruption by 'sokaiya' racketeers – the financial arm of the yakuza mafia.