The silicon oxide thin films obtained by thermal SiO2 treatment in hydrogen electron cyclotron resonance plasma at various exposure times are investigated. Using X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, we have established that such treatment leads to a significant oxygen depletion of thermal SiO2, the more so the longer the treatment time. The atomic structure of the SiOx< 2 films obtained in this way is described by the random bonding model. The presence of oxygen vacancies in the plasma-treated films is confirmed by comparing the experimental valence band photoelectron spectra and those calculated from first principles, which allows the parameter x to be estimated. We show that thermal silicon oxide films treated in hydrogen plasma can be successfully used as a storage medium for a nonvolatile resistive memory cell.