Our study using conductive atomic force microscope shows that the resistive switching voltage in the SiO2/Cu stack is reduced by 33% after Ar plasma treatment of the oxide. Besides, the negative photo-conductivity (NPC) effect, normally observed on many locations following electrical soft-breakdown, is suppressed. The NPC effect arises because the electrically-formed filamentary conductive path, comprising both Cu and oxygen vacancies, may be disrupted by the recombination of the vacancies with nearby light-excited interstitial oxygen ions. Increase of the O-H peak, as seen from FT-IR spectroscopy, indicates that surface defects generated by the Ar plasma may have adsorbed water molecules, which in turn act as counter anions (OH-) accelerating Cu-ion diffusion into the oxide, forming a more complete Cu Filament that is non-responsive to light. The finding offers the possibility of both electrical and optical resistance control by a simple surface treatment step.