Sony president Sir Howard Stringer has come under fire from critics recently, who claimed he should have made a public appearance sooner to offer an apology to the 100+ million customers affected by the recent PSN and SOE hacks. Now, Stringer has taken to the PlayStation Blog to make a formal statement.

"Dear Friends," he begins, "I know this has been a frustrating time for all of you. Let me assure you that the resources of this company have been focused on investigating the entire nature and impact of the cyber-attack we've all experienced and on fixing it. We are absolutely dedicated to restoring full and safe service as soon as possible and rewarding you for your patience. We will settle for nothing less."

Stringer also confirms the "Welcome Back" package once PSN is up and running. This will include a month of free PlayStation Plus membership for all PSN users, extensions of subscriptions for existing PlayStation Plus and Music Unlimited customers and "other benefits."

He also responds to the most common criticism of the whole affair -- the delay between Sony discovering the issue and notifying the public that there was a problem.

"I know some believe we should have notified our customers earlier than we did," he admits. "I wish we could have gotten the answers we needed sooner, butforensic analysis is a time-consuming process. Hackers, after all, do their best to cover their tracks, and it took some time for our experts to find those tracks and begin to identify what personal information had -- or had not -- been taken."

Stringer also reiterates the fact that there is "no confirmed evidence any credit card or personal information has been misused" but that the company is "continu[ing] to monitor the situation closely" and has launched a $1 million identity theft insurance policy per user for users in the US.

To find out more about the identity theft insurance policy, check this link. Stringer promises that announcements for other regions will be coming "soon."

This article originally appeared on as Stringer Issues PSN Apology