Hacking is a "Reality of Life," Take-Two Exec Says

"At the end of the day, this is something that's here to stay."

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Following the massive data breach at PlayStation company Sony, an executive from Grand Theft Auto parent company Take-Two has spoken out to say hacking is a "reality of life," and that it's not going away. Speaking Tuesday at the BMO Capital Markets Technology and Digital Media Conference, president Karl Slatoff fielded a question about the recent Sony hack and how it might affect Take-Two's outlook.

"Obviously it's not something that anybody wants, for any of the partners," he said. "We certainly wouldn't want it for Sony or Microsoft or Steam or us for that matter. Or any of our competitors. Sadly, it's a reality of life. And I think it's a reality of connected networks."

"At the end of the day, this is something that's here to stay" -- Slatoff said about hacking

Slatoff went on to say that the hacking community is "very vibrant" and "very loud." Hacking is here to stay, and so platform holders such as Microsoft, Sony, and Valve bear the responsibility of mitigating damage, Slatoff said.

"At the end of the day, this is something that's here to stay," Slatoff said about hacking. "And I think it's just incumbent upon platform operators to be on top of these things as fast as they possibly can and do what they can to minimize the damage."

Also during his presentation today, Slatoff said consumers are becoming somewhat desensitized to hacking, in part because it's become such a common headline as more and more platforms and services become online-focused. He said consumers today understand that when they store their credit card information or other personal data in an online environment there is a chance it could be compromised at some point.

Despite the inherent security risk, people still flock to online-focused platforms and services because they offer compelling entertainment and functionality. Only if there was a hack of "biblical proportions" would consumers change their minds about how they interact with online networks, Slatoff said.

"It's obviously an area where people are--I don't want to say they're becoming more comfortable with the risk of what happens when someone hacks and gets hold of my information--but they're certainly becoming more exposed to it," he explained. "I think it would take an incredible groundswell of something of biblical proportions that would happen to thwart the consumer's enthusiasm to participate in these networks and to transact online. So I see these things as speedbumps; I don't see them as brick walls."

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