The tremors of Japan’s earthquake and hacking attacks will cost Sony ¥14 billion (US$170 million) in this financial year, Sony said, reports say.

“Based on information currently available to Sony, our currently known costs associated with the unauthorized network access are estimated to be approximately 14 billion yen in the fiscal year ending March 31, 2012.” Bloomberg said in a report.

Quoting analysts, the report said it is probably the widest loss, Sony has incurred in the last 16 years cutting $2 billion from operating profit this fiscal year to keep earnings from meeting.

Operating income in the 12 months to March 2012 will be similar to the 200 billion yen ($2.5 billion) last fiscal year, the Tokyo-based company said in a preliminary earnings statement on Tuesday.

To restore the PlayStation after the hackers hit, Sony took the system offline and employed several security companies to conduct forensic audits and rebuilt its security system. They have also offered a year-long identity-theft protection program and free games to users in some countries. Masaru Kato, Sony's CFO, said all these actions along with the legal costs are included in the cost estimates.

The tsunami and the earthquake which hit Japan just three weeks before the financial year ended, had sharply dipped the consumer demand though effect on the total sales was limited as it was at the end of the financial year.

Sony will report actual results for the financial year from April 2010 to March 2011 on Thursday.