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17
Jan
2011

Measures Sony is taking against PS3 jailbreak

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Measures Sony is taking against PS3 hack

No one can say that Sony and its flagship console, the PS3, have been short of headlines this year. We already have heard plenty about how George Hotz (Geohot) and the Fail0verflow team successfully broke the PS3's encrypted keys and how these hacks have rendered Sony very much incapable of fighting piracy of PS3 games through patching their system with new Firmware.


So what is Sony to do? It's obvious by now that it will be very expensive for them to try to win the war against piracy through regular software updates, so they are doing whatever else they can. First, Sony has decided to "lawyer up" and try to get every person involved in the hacking of their system punished by the law arguing that these hackers were breaking the law by knowingly opening holes in the system to allow piracy thus hurting the entire gaming industry.


In recent declarations to the media, George Hotz stated his stance on the issue by arguing that you should be able to jailbreak your device as long as you own it. He also made it very clear that he took extra steps to make sure that his jailbreak of the PS3 would not enable users to play pirated games. George said he is hoping that if he successfully defends his case and comes out victorious that the result would prompt a change to be made to the DMCA. At this point what might happen in the legal front is anybody's guess, but it is certainly shaping to be a long battle.


Sony has also tried to stop the distribution of the hack. In recent reports Cnet has shown that Sony has, through legal means, stopped sales of USB devices that will allow custom software to be run in the PS3 system. So far the report says that the ban was only applied in Australia, but this has hardly affected the distribution of the code anywhere else. The code for the PS3 Jailbreak program had been released and has been spreading like wild fire among hackers, homebrewers and pirates. In the US, Sony has started to file charges against an online retailer in California for selling a clone of the modchip when the original was put out of business. But that still hasn’t stop hackers from using their ingenuity to circumvent the problem. Now everything from regular USB flash drives, cell phones and even a calculator can be used to upload the jailbreak program and hack into the PS3. So far it seems that measure will not help Sony win the war against piracy.


Another attempt to stop the jailbreak of the PS3 from Sony's part, and perhaps the most successful one, has been the release of firmware 3.42. This update does not enhance the PS3 in any way and it's obviously released to render existing consoles incapable of running pirated software. As mentioned before, a firmware update will not solve the problem and is only a temporary solution. Even though this firmware will stop hackers from running the latest games for now, it is only a matter of time before somebody patches it allowing it to run free once again.


Finally, we would like to mention a rumored measure Sony is taking. Some reports have mentioned that some PSN accounts have been banned due to the detection of piracy and cheating. This measure seems realistic, but at the time of the writing of this article there has not been proof that Sony is actually banning people for going online and running pirated games. It seems that this measure also would be a long shot to try to stop the problem, since PSN accounts are free to create and are not tight to a specifi console (so far).


Sadly, some key players in the industry don't believe that Sony will be able to effectively combat piracy on the PlayStation 3. Martin Walfisz, former CEO of Ubisoft subsidiary Ubisoft Massive, who was a key player in developing Ubisoft's new DRM technologies, has declared that since playing pirated games doesn't require a modchip, Sony won't be able to easily detect hacked consoles. What do you think Sony should do to stop piracy of their games? So far this seems a battle that Sony is loosing, and we will have to wait and see how everything plays up in the end.



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Comments

0 bob 2011-01-28 19:29 #7
@Roxxo- Kale's right, if you think its ok for people to do that then join geohot in court and go down when he does. everyone suffers when things like this happen. plus the "good upstanding people" don't get the whole "hackers will fix the fix" so thats a stupid point dumb@$$
i really hope that sony wins this
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0 JR 2011-01-26 11:21 #6
Honestly, pirates know that there will ALWAYS be a majority of people buying games legitimately and this helps to displace some of the guilt of pirating. The day the developers stop making games because of pirating is the day that pirates will buy games.
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0 Roxxo 2011-01-24 15:36 #5
@Kale Dude shove your self righteous bulls*** right up your a**. "Good upstanding people" my a**. To everyone else, yea Sony and everyone else will impose extreme countermeasures to ensure that they are in control but guess what! It'll get hacked! and the thing after that and the thing after that. Good God People NOTHING is impossible especially when you have a shit ton of like minded individuals working toward a common goal.
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0 VR-4nic 2011-01-18 04:54 #4
Are people really that poor that they can't buy games? Whats so great about not paying for a game? Devs spend a lot of time and $$$ making these games so its really hard for me to understand why someone wouldn't want to support them in this act. I love gaming, always have, so I guess its just normal for me to want to spend money on what I love doing. I guess if a lot of people think they don't have to pay for their games then it's only a matter of time before we don't have them.
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0 cfir 2011-01-18 04:15 #3
This artical seems to be mixing up a number of issues. Only the original Jailbreak required a special USB devices. The current threat is custom firmware which can be installed via any USB device. It would appear though that the first attempts at creating custom firmware to play pirated (backed up) games is rather dangerous and has been "bricking" consoles (poetic justice some might say). As for baning from PSN, each console has a unique hardware ID used for licensing software downloaded form PSN, so the actual PSN ID would be irrelevant as the PS3 itself could be banned rather than the PSN ID.
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0 Hoppa 2011-01-18 03:38 #2
Sony will have a hard time batteling the detection of pirated games. Game-developers could think about putting agreements into their games that an internetconnect ion is required to play their games. This limits the number of users (the ones without internet cannot play the game), but since it's mentiond on the box and in the agreement it's legal. The possibillity to verify an unique sarialnumber that is linked to your PSN-account can be vreated, thus preventing illegal copies to be played.

In the end the "lega-users" of the PS3 are punished for this pirace. On the other end, PS2 BC, iPhone/Pod synch, NTFS support (or other file systems that provide the service of >2gb-files to be put on the ext-harddrive), subtitels and a decent internetbrowser can be developed by the community. Maybe we see a Wii emulator with the Move as controller! Who knows!
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0 Kale 2011-01-18 01:28 #1
Firstly I hope that Sony wins the case against geohot and his band of pirates. Would be a great example to send them to prison for a number of years. He is nothing but a common thief and deserves nothing less.

Since there is nothing much more it appears Sony can do is the simple fact that consoles will move away from disc based media, and DRM will become more prevalent on the consoles. Most likely requiring a constant connection to Sony's servers.

So thank you to all you hackers who force all us good upstanding people to have to now suffer with DRM and the drastic measures developers and console manufacturers have to take to punish you. We all suffer for it.
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