back to article Anonymous hacks Sony PS3 sites

Several Sony PlayStation sites are unavailable this morning thanks to what looks like a distributed denial of service attack launched by Anonymous. The hacktivists have left the Scientologists alone in order to harass the console-makers because of Sony's action against two lads for jailbreaking PS3s. In a strangely self- …


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  1. Ian Stephenson

    Getting a bit breezy, Sony?

    "They that sow the wind, shall reap the whirlwind"

    I don't see Sony being as stupid as ACS:Law was. I expect Sony to appear to ignore the ddos, and not bait anon any further, whilst working with the authorities to get the hacktavists on charges.

    Must say though it couldn't have happened to a more deserving company.

    1. KB 1
      Thumb Down

      "Must say though it couldn't have happened to a more deserving company" - Why?

      Why say that? What has Sony really done wrong other than pursue legal action against a couple of idiots who infringed their intellectual property, caused (or attempted to cause) significant harm to one of Sony's core product lines as well as harming their business partners (the game developers); promoted piracy and inconvenienced millions of legitimate PS3 customers all over the world?

      Oh yes: "allegedly".

      I for one, really hope "Geohot" gets the book thrown at him in court - he thoroughly deserves it. I'm also very much against these "Anonymous" f**kwits (can I say that on El Reg?) and their DDOS attacks because really, the only people they hurt and inconvenience are all the completely innocent consumers who might actually quite like to access Sony's websites or play a few games on their PS3s.

      I just don't get the schadenfreude over Sony's situation - they make consumer entertainment products; they're nothing like the Scientology or Wikileaks stories (or ACS: Law for that matter) and unless you're a hacker who engages in practices of dubious legality, this legal action has little adverse effect on you.

      1. lIsRT

        abc and/or 123

        "Anonymous" f**kwits (can I say that on El Reg?)"

        Regrettably, you can; I believe the correct word is "fuckwits".

      2. Anonymous Coward

        What have they done?

        Take away linux from the ps3. Or online gaming. You now have a choice of one of those two advertised features.

        Sue kids who are hacking their ps3s, that they own. Sue them for a lot of money. Chokolo in particular was interested in linux only and is on the receiving end of a million euro suit.

        Rootkit people's PCs

        Be a major part of the MPAA and RIAA and their campaign of lawsuits and misinformation.

        is any more needed?

        1. g e

          Still everyone's forgetting

          You own the hardware NOT the firmware and NOT the software, you license that the same as any other commercial code-based product.

          SONY shouldn't really have rescinded the OtherOS option IMHO but it's their prerogative. If you want to run Linux that bad just get a cheaper-than-a-playstation3 secondhand PC for god's sake. What the obsession with some imagined right to run Linux on a PS3 is I don't know. Does it really do something magical that Linux on any-other-platform doesn't do?

          Watch the thumbs-down icon counter go for gold...

          1. KB 1

            Thanks to g e

            ...for pointing out the blindingly obvious difference between "hardware" (which is yours to with what you like) and firmware / software which are Sony's intellectual property and which you are most certainly NOT allowed to mess around with to your heart's content.

            With the greatest respect, Loyal Commenter, if you really are a software developer, I would have thought you'd understand that the actions of these hackers / crackers involve making unauthorised changes to software / firmware which the relevant rights owner has every entitlement (some would say obligation) to defend. The rootkits saga... fair enough, but that wasn't the reason Anonymous started this whole farce, was it? And it has nothing to do with the PS3.

            As for the loss of OtherOS on the PS3... I would be fairly confident that 99%+ of PS3 owners didn't even notice, let alone care. Yes, it was a shame that it happened, but the person to blame for that is our friend George Hotz because he was the one that pushed too far against the boundaries of the playpen Sony had provided.

            It was a sad move, but it was perfectly legal - yes Sony offered the choice of OtherOS or online gaming, but they are perfectly entitled to change the terms of access to PSN (which is, after all, a free service) and if you didn't want to accept them (and the firmware update they required) then that's your choice.

            Sony owes an obligation to games developers and publishers to take steps to protect its platform against piracy. I know people would love to believe that hackers are all acting in their own hobbyist interests but that's patently not the case. Why did Hotz take such delight in publishing the PS3's root keys on the internet? Is he really so stupid that he didn't realise this was like waving a red flag at a very, very big bull? Of course not - he's living off his own massively inflated ego and delusion that he's somehow above the system. He did it because he knew it would be picked up by pirates and damaging to Sony. The sooner he and people like him are cut down to size, the better for everyone involved in the gaming, software and technology industries.

            1. Rattus Rattus

              "firmware / software which are Sony's intellectual property"

              Now, I see that as bullshit right there. If I paid for a product, I see it as my right to do what the hell I want with it, without regard to whether that product is hardware, software or a bit of each. The code might be Sony's IP, but the copy of it inside my (hypothetical) console is MY COPY, with which I will do as I please. Now, that doesn't include passing it off as mine or duplicating it and selling it on to other people - the law rightly forbids me from doing so. If I want to modify it for my own use however, I do not see any moral reason why I should not be able to. Sony might say I can't but, honestly, fuck them.

              It's about time corporations were reminded that once they have sold something they have no control over what the customer does with it.

              Anonymous might be a bit out of line in DDOSing Sony's sites, but I'm not going to shed any tears over it.

          2. sT0rNG b4R3 duRiD
            Thumb Down



            You forget, _at_its_time_, the cell was (not is... since they pretty much killed it now) a pretty remarkable processor, despite its quirkiness. At a time when multicore intel chips were costly, you could get a PS3 and mess with asymmetric multiprocessing. It was/is still quite fun.

            That is why I bought my first PS3. But indeed I take your point, Intel PC's have since advanced.

            Still there are people who would want to mess with PS3's however. I am one of these.

            Reasons? Probably same reason some people do airfix models or model trains or jigsaws. I see these other pursuits as pointless but I respect that from another persons point of view they may feel otherwise. Anyway, to continue...

            Maybe there is something in small print somewhere that says Sony have the right to change their firmware at any given time. But understand this, initially Sony openly supported and encouraged OtherOS. This has been argued before as a reason why the platform was finally hacked so late. Most were content with the hypervisor exposed model we were given, which was just about good enough to boot a linux and mess with the cell.

            Now Sony tells us: Linux xor PSN/new games. How do you think we feel?

          3. DrunkJunkie

            36 for me...



      3. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        At what point

        Just a question, but at what point does it stop being (the recently legalized) jailbreaking and start being (the still illegal) DMCA removal of copyright protection features?

        1. Giles Jones Gold badge

          Booting copies

          When you circumvent copy protection it becomes illegal.

          Removing restrictions on what your console can load is not circumventing copyright so long as the process doesn't also allow the device to boot copied software.

      4. Loyal Commenter Silver badge

        @KB 1


        If Sony were only going after those who were pirating software, fair enough, but this is not the case. They are going after people who have re-enabled an advertised feature of the console that Sony (arguably unfairly, in the 'unfair contract term' sense) removed. As far as I am aware, these people are not promoting piracy any more than manufacturers of blank CDs, etc. If I recall correctly, many of those involved have been at pains to distance themselves from pirates.

        Also, they have not 'inconvenienced millions of legitimate PS3 customers'. I own a PS3, and since I don't use Linux on it, I have been inconvenienced not one jot. In fact, the only PS3 users that have been inconvenienced by the whole saga would appear to be those who have been inconvenienced by Sony, who now have to choose between using their console for Linux, or using it for games.

        By the way, I think this is a good opportunity to reiterate the difference between a hacker and a cracker. When you talk about hackers, you almost certainly mean crackers (those who break into systems illegally), rather than hackers (those who find creative uses for software and/or hardware*). As a professional software developer, I am proud to be a hacker, and also proud to not be a cracker.

        *Actually the precise meaning of the term comes from a derivation which is not even related to computing, where 'hackers' would find ways of getting to areas not normally accessible to the publi, such as roofs and steam tunnels. The term originates from the activites of a group at MIT in th '60s and later gave its name to a group of early home computer pioneers.

      5. The BigYin

        @KB 1

        Rootkits, for one.

        1. Highlander


          Not Sony. Get it right folks. BMG is responsible for the Rootkit fiascos. Yes, Sony owns BMG, but BMG operates on it's own. The software was not developed by Sony, it was a third party anti-piracy solution that BMG purchased without really understanding the implications. Not a huge surprise since BMG is a music company, not a technology company.

          But, let's not let facts screw up some perfectly good rationalizing.

          BTW, GeoHot isn't in trouble for reenabling OtherOS. That was already done. He's not in trouble for modding his hardware, Sony doesn;t give two craps about someone frying their PS3 in an attempt to modify it. GeoHot is in trouble for obtaining the metldr key and publishing it. If all he or Grafchokolo wanted was OtherOS they already had it, long ago. all they needed to do was not update their firmware, or even stick to a firmware that was jailbroken. Taking things beyond that point and hacking and publishing the metldr key goes well beyond defending OtherOS and tramples all over the Intellectual property and network security of the PS3 and PSN.

          As others have said, as have I before, this isn't about the modification of hardware, it's about people violating the terms of use of the Ps3 and PSN, and disabling the content protection that makes the games console a viable business model. If it was all about OtherOS it would have ended long ago.

          1. David Hicks


            Geohot and graf didn't violate the terms of the psn, as neither of them cared about it or used it. Sony are still trying to prove Hotz had a PSN account *at all* but it looks like he didn't.

            And there are no terms of use for a ps3 that you own. Seriously, you own it, it's yours. I didn't sign a lease agreement when I bought mine, did you?

            Geo is in trouble for all sorts of stuff. The metldr key hasn't even turned out to be all that useful AFAICT. Sony are suing him for everything from DMCA violation to extortion. Yes, extortion. He jokingly said that if MS, Sony or Nintendo wanted to secure the next console generation, maybe they should give him a job. Sony included that as evidence of threats to continue breaking systems unless he was paid, rather than a half-joking offer to work as a security consultant.

            As for what geo and graf want... Geo seems to want fame and Graf wants to learn and share, gaining full control of the system in doing so. Neither of these things is a crime.

            And as for your wonderful weaselly excuse about OtherOS not really being removed... really, you can stop white-knighting for the huge multinational now, they don't need you and they aren't going to give you any free stuff.

      6. Ad Fundum

        Be careful ...

        You can say "fuckwits", but you'll get a two-story ban for swearing if you do.

      7. Giles Jones Gold badge

        Hire them not jail them.

        Such "hackers" have skills that would be useful to governments and companies. They should be hired not jailed.

        Fast forward a few years and you have some data you need to access in an obsolete DRMed format. The maker of that DRM is out of business or doesn't want to help you. Who are you going to turn to?

        Getting digital data off old hardware is hard enough, look at the 1980s Doomsday Book for an example of that. So throw DRM into the mix as well and it's a bit difficult.

        People who are experts at hacking such DRM will be invaluable for such things in the future.

      8. Whitefort

        @KB 1

        "Why say that? What has Sony really done wrong other than pursue legal action against a couple of idiots..."


        Clearly you either have the attention span of a goldfish, or you've only recently started paying attention. Look back at Sony's antics over the past several years. Asking 'What has Sony really done wrong' is likely to produce more answers that 'What have the Romans ever done for us?'

  2. Anonymous Coward


    Sony have been total dicks - this is true (and not just with the PS3, anyone remember that rootkit?)

    However, is out-dicking Sony really a good strategy?

    I was all for Anonymous when they were attacking cults like Scientology and actually performing a social good by their actions.

    I really hope the courts drop one on Sony from a great height, but I can't see these actions of Anonymous helping matters any.

  3. Anonymous Coward

    I saw the stickies far and wide...

    The day that failchan died.

    I remember when anon was feared, and not the butt of every internet joke.

    Trolls trolling trolls trolling trolls.

    Oldfags despair, newfags rejoice. The internets are dead.

  4. DrXym Silver badge

    Ignore them

    Don't antagonise them, just ignore them. Warn staff about potential social engineering / security breaches, double check your firewalls & failover arrangements, have a plan to respond to breaches. I'm sure a few sites might get taken down and maybe some of them breached so prepare for it. But publicly just ignore them. The ADD brigade will find a new target for lulz after they grow bored.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Black Helicopters

      Who should ignore who?

      Apologies, who ignore who? Sony ignore Anon, or Anon ignore Sony?

      Anon versus the Scientologists only worked when they picketed and made their case. Plaquards informing people of things like the disconnection that broke up families and all that stuff. The Anon electronic attacks didn't do much other than get Anons in to trouble and the Wise Beard Man brought home that method of doing business.

      If Anon want to hurt Sony, then it should be picketing their shops with leaflets outlining Sonys attitude towards customers; the bios fail on laptops that wrecked XP Comp mode; the root kit that installed silently on customers machines; I mean, there is a whole archive of Sony fail attitude towards their customers. If Anon want to hurt Sony, then that is the way to go. It'll draw a lot more news presence than picketing scientology ever did!

      1. Ian McNee

        A good point, Michelle, partially

        We are still pretty much in the "Wild West" stage of the internet's development and the LOIC script-kiddie 4chan dwellers are going to be around for a while in this environment. Likewise it's no surprise that Anon's street protests against the Scientology cult were much more effective than DDOS and defacements.

        However with the emergence of things like WikiLeaks and the subsequent HBGary affair hacktivism is growing up and finding its political feet: whichever side one takes it is impossible to dismiss as the pranks of some sad "mom's basement" dwellers. Personally I beleive that the material revealed by Anonymous with their HBGary hack gave a pretty scary glimpse of state+corporate dirty tricks on-line and the more light shed on that the better.

        Traditional campaigning is important but grown-up hacktivism at its best can play a similar role to investigative journalism, not merely on-line civil disobedience and graffiti agit-prop.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward


          You know, the more I sit and think about what you've written, the more I'm starting to realise that at the moment, Anon firing the LOIC at Sony is more likely to make the news. Has anyone told the BBC News desk about this?

      2. DrXym Silver badge

        Anonymous of course

        The people who pick some target DDOS them a bit and then get distracted and move onto something else. Just ignore them. Let them flail against the firewalls if they want, collect logs but just ignore them.

        As for picketing sure let Anonymous do that. It's certainly a more legal form of protest. Not sure how you think some things that happened and resolved YEARS AGO like the root kit are worth picketing though.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          It's worth it

          Those were two examples. The entire argument is about corporate attitude as a form of greed.

          I mean, every organisation has to work towards a profit, but for organisations to treat their customers the way that Sony (and others) are doing, is pathetic. That's why I don't buy Sony, stay away from Microsoft, don't own Apple (well, that's a lie I bought two Apple TV2's and jailbroke them) and I think that the general public don't really know the battles that are being fought in the IT arena.

          When people I know are told about the PS3 mess, they're shocked; it never crossed their mind that they couldn't do what they liked with kit they had bought. When they considered that they were buying a licence rather than buying a product, the cogs whirred.

          Some of them said, fair enough, if the device does what they want, then it isn't a deal breaker, but most of them really didn't like the thought; especially when it came to Sony changing the ruels and deleting the other OS option ... of Amazon, Apple, Google, etc. deleting books or apps that they had paid out good money for; even the prospect of being refunded didn't sit well with them. They wanted the product.

          I do believe that if the public in general actually sat and thought about this, then there would really be hell to pay.

  5. dave 81

    Satan will be ice skating to work

    Before I buy Sony again. From root kit's on CD's to puerile legal actions, they are just another scum company.

  6. Joe K


    Fighting for gamers rights and freedoms, by removing gamers right and freedom to play their consoles online.

    Great job guys, really endearing yourselves and Hotz to the consumer here.

  7. RJ

    Much as I usually enjoy the actions of Anonymous

    Their bombastic "Thou hast gained our attention, tremble brief mortals" spiel does make them look bloody stupid.

    1. Anonymous Coward

      I was thinking that too

      I mean it's clearly not the same people who wrote the earlier 'We Are Legion. Expect Us' style messages. They had style, presence.

      This lot, though, actually SOUND like they're from 4Chan.

      Based on the deterioration of their messages, I'm pretty sure Anonymous' core people have left over the years, and it's now just the up-and-coming whippersnappers who've taken over. People who missed the original message and now just go "You're a dick, I'm calling a LOIC! LOLLORZ".

      I'm not saying I disagree- Sony are dicks, no question- but Anon has just lost it's cool edge.

  8. Anonymous Coward


    The UK sites working fine at the moment 09:17 - GMT.

  9. Anonymous Coward

    what happened to the rights of GAMERS?

    like the right to access PSN, the right to play games, the right to not have pikey pirates ripping off software and destroying investment and creativity in the gaming industry.

    They are not protecting gamers, they are just publicity seeking whores, and thanks to El-Reg you grant them their wish... **Sigh***

    I'm guessing this is nothing more than a DDoS attack by a bunch of "anonymous" (nothing on the Internet is truly anonymous) upset Xbox fanboys, now their console is sat in last place in the "console wars" (war?) with no decent games coming out and Microsoft rolling around in their money laughing at them.

    1. DrXym Silver badge

      Not anonymous at all

      The ringleaders might be anonymous. The morons running Low Orbit Ion Cannon (the DDOS tool) are not. Their IP addresses will be gathered and logged. I expect the resulting IP addresses will be sorted by frequency and locale and then handed out to local law enforcement to process.

      You may as well write your name and address on a brick and throw it through a shop window, hoping that so many bricks will be thrown that the police won't have time to follow them all up.

    2. squilookle
      Thumb Down

      @A/C 09:25 **Sigh**

      Let's not confuse the issues of childish console fanboyism/rivalry with the more important issues as stake.

      I don't agree with this bit of action by anonymous, or the tone of the message they posted. I do agree with your first paragraph.

      However, there are serious issues at stake here with regard to corporate rights vs individual rights, the merit (or lack of) of online forms of protest, your rights to do what you wish with property you have purchased, the rights of a manufacturer to take away advertised features of a product you have purchased.

      If you side with Sony on these issues, that's fine, you're entitled to your opinion. If you don't agree with the actions of "Anonymous", likewise.

      But don't sneak the "I'm guessing this is [...] upset Xbox fanboys, now their console is sat in last place in the "console wars"." crap into this debate, it doesn't have a place here.

  10. Anonymous Coward

    Regardless of the morality or legality of Anonymous's actions

    ...that's a great letter of explaination....

  11. Anonymous Coward


    "Anonymous hacks Sony PS3 sites" and yet "what looks like a distributed denial of service attack" which does not involve any hacking at all.

    Getting fed up of these getting confused in the press!

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Well, Sony have plenty of those.

  13. Anonymous Coward

    It's about time

    Given Sony's lawsuit-happy actions, this come as no surprise. The only thing that surprisd me is that it hadn't happen sooner.

    1. Anonymous Coward

      I don't get

      why people are upset about Sony for protecting their IP, or why idiots bring up Sony BMG rootkit that affected a few thousand people 10 years ago...

      Get a life, move on. you the one losing out ny not buying Sony.

      1. Juillen 1

        You don't get it..

        Because you possibly haven't thought about it?

        You sound like the kind of person who is all for the extension of copyright (because, like, dude, it's all about the IP man). Despite the fact that this is actual theft from the public domain (getting it legally sanctioned is a tactic worthy of the robber barons of old).

        Realistically, Sony aren't protecting their IP (nobody is copying it, nobody is repackaging it and claiming it as their own). What they're trying to do is make your purchase of an item an effective lease (which they don't really push home in consumer friendly bites, probably because most people aren't really interested), where they try and dictate what you can do with what you've bought.

        Want to hit it with a hammer? Fine. Want to place a bit of solder in it? Not fine.

        Advertise something (I bought a PS3 because it supported Linux/other OS, which I thought was a great idea, so purchased by putting my money where my beliefs are), and then remove the functionality later? Now that's making a mockery of consumer relations, and fair dealing.

        When you look at this dispassionately, a company has sold an item, on the merit of performing tasks A and B.

        The company then decides it doesn't want you to do A anymore, so removes that functionality from the device, allowing you to do either A or B (and if you do B, you'll never be able to do A again). This reduces the value of the item to everybody affected. Company does not offer restitution for the devaluing of the product, and the reduction of functionality.

        Now, a person comes along, and says "This is unfair. I bought to do A and B, and I will find a way to do A and B". This person works out how to do both A and B again, restoring functionality to that initial agreement you made when you purchased the item.

        This restoration to the original terms of the deal lands the person in court with life destroying fines and a criminal record.

        What's to get?

      2. Someone Else Silver badge

        You don't get it...

        ...probably because you have confused the concept of "Intellectual Property" with the concept of "Bait and Switch"?

  14. Vic

    I really wish they wouldn't do this.

    I couldn't care less whether the Sony sites are up or down - but by taking this sort of action, Anonymous have turned Sony into the victim.

    They'll play on that. They'll use it to garner sympathy. This will help their court action. They now have an "ooh look at the nasty hacktivists" story to tell the Judge, and they'll use that to back up their assertions that there is a criminal conspiracy behind Geohot's actions.

    Anonymous really haven't helped here.


    1. John Wilson


      It's even worse than that; Sony can now claim - with some legitimacy - that the hackers were not acting alone or for fun, but were conceivably part of a larger conspiracy to defraud Sony.

      Anonymous should have stuck to protest signs outside Scientology; all they've done here is commit a blatant criminal act that will do nothing to help the people they're claiming to act for.

      1. DrXym Silver badge

        Doubt there was a larger conspiracy

        But hackers were directly or indirectly defrauding Sony by circumventing copy protection. I think if I had potentially hundreds of millions, even billions to lose through people facilitating piracy on my platform that I would unleash the lawyers on them too.

        1. Vic


          > But hackers were directly or indirectly defrauding Sony by circumventing copy protection

          There's nothing to show that anyone defrauded anyone else of anything[1].

          It's an allegation that Sony have made to support their need to force Geohot to travel right across the country to defend himself. They haven't proven it.

          They almost certainly won't prove it, either, since most of the work of breaking the copyright protection happened when Sony themselves released most of the private key.

          Someone appears not to realise that every bit of a key you release halves the task of breaking the rest...


          [1] Unless you consider Sony's removal of a key selling point to be fraud, of course. The class action does...

  15. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    Thats it screw up my gaming!

    Really messed up gaming last night as some US friends kept losing connection.

    Get back to annoying the reptile worshippers and leave people who could be your allies alone!

    PSN was very flakey last night.

    1. Dave 62
      Big Brother


      PSN was flakey last-last night for me and a few others, don't know if it's related, don't know if they're targeting relevant doo-hickeys.

      Not sure where I stand on this, sure I want my PSN running smoothly but Sony removed other OS capability and it's not like it was an "optional update", either you installed it or you couldn't go online, utter pricks, you can't blame the homebrewers from trying to break it and they shouldn't be quite so harassed as they are by Sony, why not work with them to find a solution that both fights piracy and allows homebrew content?

      This goes to the long running "do you own the hardware you just payed a fair wad of cash for" debate. If I bought a CD player and a year later I was forced to update the firmware so that I couldn't play non-authorised CDs (remember the rootkit scandal :D) I'd be pretty pissed off, not all burnt CDs are pirated, it might be my own music, a friend's music, free (beer) music.

      tl;dr fight the powa

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        I ummed and ahhed about Other OS

        But got the update before I decided.

        TBH I am happy using it as a media hub and games console, not the original though - that failed (YLOD) and the repair did not last, so got a Slim and transfered data.

        I still think Sony should work with Homebrew people.

        CDs - I used to have a Sony DVD player which would not play any non red book but would play burnt discs - usually rips of the aformentioned non red books. (Used to laser wore out)

  16. Anonymous Coward

    Hacking ?

    Come on Reg, calling DDOS hacking is something for the tabloids, not this site.

    Great approach by the way..

    Can't play for free, take down the network for the users who did pay for their games.


    anon, to post in style :)

  17. Keyser Soze
    Thumb Up

    Guess this means...

    They've been watching Steven Colbert!

  18. Anonymous Coward

    Sony: chooks come home to roost

    Posting anonymously, but I'm not FROM anonymous - you understand...

  19. Scorchio!!
    Thumb Up

    Re: Getting a bit breezy, Sony?

    >>"They that sow the wind, shall reap the whirlwind"

    >I don't see Sony being as stupid as ACS:Law was. I expect >Sony to appear to ignore the ddos, and not bait anon any further, >whilst working with the authorities to get the hacktavists on charges. Must >say though it couldn't have happened to a more deserving company.

    Deserving indeed, after their root kit stupidity which in fact puts them on a par with 'anonymous'.

    As you say they will co-operate, and this is one more splint on the bonfire of those who think they are 'anonymous'. Retribution, it's coming, though this attack on Sony is probably no more irritating than a mosquito's attempts to bite a rhino.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re:no more irritating than a mosquito's attempts to bite a rhino.

      but anons attempt is more enteraining

      1. Scorchio!!

        Re: Re:no more irritating than a mosquito's attempts to bite a rhino.

        "but anons attempt is more enteraining"

        No more entertaining than the mindless destruction we saw in Trafalgar square the other day, and no less mindless. Much like children throwing their toys out of their pram, though this costs much more and will result in some entertaining court cases, in which people will discover just how anonymous they are not.

  20. Miek


    So that's why the PS3 would not log in last night. Cheers anon.

  21. Gerard Krupa

    it has been deemed wholly unforgivable

    Narcissistic personality disorder maybe? The sad thing is they probably see themselves as crusading heroes rather than freetards throwing a tantrum. There are good reasons to rail against the kind of closed proprietary systems that prevent free innovation and trade but I'll wager not one of the people behind this has used a hacked PS3 for anything other than piracy.

    1. defiler


      To be honest, I'd laugh my ass off if they'd used a shedload of PS3s running Linux to perform the DDOS. Though I agree that most hacked PS3s (like other hacked consoles) will be used for piracy.

      Except the original XBox - XBMC FTW!!

    2. Anonymous Coward

      Damn right..

      I'm chucking as many games on my PS3 HD as i can, then returning em to love fiml, b'buster etc etc.

      Bollocks to Sony...They started this shite and by christ the end users will finish it.

      I for one, buy sony gear specifically to hack it and cost Sony money....

      PS1, PS2, PS3 PSP, all legally owned by me and all legally hacked by me...Ripping of their software, illegal, but ask me if i give a monkeys.......

      Its MINE, i BOUGHT it (not rent, borrow etc) with my taxable income and as such, have a right to do what i want with it....

      Karma is fucking fab.....

      1. Anonymous Coward

        I hope your HDD crashes!

        More work goes into producing a game than any album and a lot of films, and of course you get a lot of value from a good game.

        Those developers need to pay their mortgages as well, and unlike lots of overpaid "superstars" and film actors they are more in the real world.

        1. Anonymous Coward

          And, if it does

          I shall replace it and start the cycle again...Besides, i have them all imaged.....Nothing i cant download again in a few hours.....

  22. copsewood
    Big Brother

    modding a console

    And telling others how to do it is freedom of expression. You won't find copyright in any bill of rights or convention on human rights. Clearly Sony imagine their intellectual property rights override computer misuse criminal law as with the rootkit, and constitutional law as with their use of the DMCA to suppress information about modification. Once I buy some electronics gear as far as I'm concerned I can do whatever I like with it and tell others what I have learned.

    1. Badvok


      I think you'll find that property ownership is covered in almost every 'Bill of Rights' in some shape or form, and yes property includes intellectual property.

      1. DrXym Silver badge


        Thing is the DMCA makes it an offence to circumvent access controls, such as Sony are using on the PS3 to stop piracy. If you're going to be a hacker, maybe it's better not to live in a country with a law very explicitly designed to protect companies and give them legal recourse.

        BTW there are exemptions to the circumvention laws and perhaps Sony could be challenged on a point of law (e.g. Geohot claiming he was investigating security flaws in good faith) but just getting stuck in and then bragged about it was asking for a metric shit ton of trouble to land on him.

      2. copsewood
        Big Brother

        @Badvok: IP isn't property the way you understand it

        Neither Bakunin's anarchist definition of property as theft, nor the 7th commandment: "though shalt not steal", extends to intellectual property, because in both cases copying something doesn't deprive the original owner of the use of the original property. To the extent ownership of property can be considered a human right this is only in the limited sense that the owner is disadvantaged through becoming deprived of the use of original property which making new copies does not do.

        The idea that Sony owns license conditions over a customer (who currently denies having accepted these conditions), and that this gives Sony the right to restrict this individual's actions and have them dragged thousands of miles across the US to be sued is vindictive and absurd. But that seems to be the basis of Sony's civil action against George Hotz, see .

        So your assertion that when corporations kick customers around like this that they are exercising "human rights" is contemptible and sick. Copyright term extensions can be purchased by interested corporations such as Disney through congressional campaign contributions. The kind of "property" that results is not the fundamental basis of human rights.

        Sony had this one coming to them. The further they pursue this case the greater the cost will be in damage to reputation and loss of sales. The timely warning Anonymous are giving Sony should be considered by Sony's shareholders as a favour, because the more Sony's incompetent management succeed in bullying George Hotz and other tinkerers and hobbyist customers, the greater will be the negative publicity this case will cause them, and the greater the losses of sales which will result.

    2. sT0rNG b4R3 duRiD

      Right and wrong....

      **** I'd like to know what gives Sony the right to treat people who decide to hack their PS3s, be it a hardware hack or firmware hack, like criminals.

      Actually, I know.. The judiciary system. How can they find people doing such DIY jobs on their own machines guilty of any wrong doing? Pressure from big corporations like Sony who convince the law that this must be wrong.

      How can this be allowed to happen?

      Ask yourself, ask your conscience:

      1) what *REALLY* is wrong here?

      2)Who *REALLY* is the evil party?

      Some hackers that want to get the most out of their machine or the company who makes it that says, no, you cannot do it, in fact, I'm gonna whoop your ass 'cos you tried. Hmm... seems I might have to bend on the law to do it. Never mind, I've got the $$$, you don't.

      I know some will say the only reason people want to get so close to bare metal is to pirate. That's not universally true. Honestly, how many of you here have actually had 8 bit computers. Do you remember how did it feel to be so close to the metal? Never mind 8 bit computers. Remember the Amiga? Heck even now, how many people here have actually wondered, or sought to find out how your average PC boots.... How many work on microcontrollers?

      If you're not one of these guys, you will never understand. If you do, you will know what I mean.

      DDOSing Sony is probably more wrong than hacking a PS3 (which I do not believe is wrong at all!), but honestly, I think what Sony are doing are magnitudes more wrong... in fact to the point of being evil, than what Anonymous are doing. In fact, it makes the 'wrong' Anonymous is doing seem justified.

      Here in lies the difference. I see what Sony are doing essentially EVIL (maybe they are doing things in a legal fashion but again I would contend that there are grey areas here) whereas what Anonymous are doing I consider as merely 'wrong' and legally dodgy but with essentially somewhat GOOD intentions.

      I only hope that Anonymous do not just leave it to DDOS's which as many rightly point out may not hurt Sony all that much.

      More public awareness perhaps. Dig up *ALL* the dirt on Sony and air it in the open. If Anonymous truly achieves a score against Sony like they did against HBGary, wow... that would be truly something. Something that I truly hope happens. Other ideas: An Anonymous campaign to promote the boycott of Sony products perhaps...

      I never played D&D much in me younger day, so I could be getting this wrong but I see Sony as having an alignment of EVIL to LAWFUL EVIL, in other words, entirely despicable, whereas Anonymous, as having an alignment of chaotic neutral to chaotic good.

      Good on you, Anonymous! Give 'em hell

      Sony, you suck. And Anonymous, if I could, I'd buy the lot of you beers.

      1. Highlander

        @sT0rNG b4R3 duRiD

        You utterly do not get it.

        This is not 8-bit home computers, it's not about hardware modding a console, it's not about OtherOS. This is about the security of the platform, both PS3 and PSN. *if* it was all about OtherOS and people felt so strongly about other OS, then they'd bite the bullet and keep an old PS3 on old firmware and run their Linux on it. The majority of PS3s sold now were sold without OtherOS, there is nothing top restore on those systems because they were never sold with it. On the older systems people made the choice to upgrade or now.

        Even then, the reason GeoHot is in court is not OtherOS. there were already hacks available to restore Other OS or boot another Linux distro if you wanted. GeoHot got into trouble because the moron obtained the metldr key and *published* it. Without the Metldr key, the change Sony made to the private signing key was sufficient to restore security to the delivery of games, but did not prevent Homebrew from being run. But with the publishing of the metldr key, the changes Sony made to the private signing key were useless because Geohot had made it possible to simply ignore the security on the SELF. Obtaining and releasing the metldr key had zero to do with OtherOS, the *only* reason for obtaining the metldr key is to enable game piracy. That is why that egotistical little moron is in deep trouble. That is why Sony took action. While Sony still had sufficient control to securely deliver games, even when homebrew enthusiasts ran CFW that allowed homebrew, that was a tolerable situation for Sony because the integrity of game delivery and PSN security was still viable. But releasing the metldr key changed the game completely.

        Anonymous has turned into nothing less than a crappy little cyber-terror organization. Once they started releasing individual information and targeting individuals they crossed a line. their self important puff against Sony is further evidence that they see themselves as above and beyond the law. I'm sure someone will reply that Sony acts as if they are above and beyond the law - in fact they don't, and they are bound by the law, and people can (and have) sue them if they like.

        1. sT0rNG b4R3 duRiD


          You are absolutely right, it's not all about OtherOS. OtherOS kept us some of us vaguely happy but remember what the restrictions were.

          What I would have liked to see is complete access to the bare metal unopposed by Sony.

          I do not condone piracy, God knows, the small fry working for the likes of the evil like EA need to eat.

          There are ways, you know, to still try and ensure one runs original copies of games...

          One way I can think of the way fee paying MMO's go. I mean, as far as I can imagine, the piracy rate in WoW (apart from socially engineered stealing of paid-up accounts) is probably very low.

          And your PC by no means has to run a locked down Blizzard OS, just a daemon that checks to see if there's any chance you may be cheating.

          imho, the best games on the PS3 are those that have online content. So is this such a big feature that cannot be implemented?

          1. Highlander

            The MMO model?

            Only works for MMOs. Gran Turismo? Not so much. Soul Calibur? Uncharted? Infamous? LIttle Big Planet?

            The micro-transaction driven model of MMOs doesn't work outside the business of MMOs. In any event, you're talking of the MMO model as a defense against piracy and suggesting that all games go that way to avoid the issues caused by the various hacking attempts. That implicitly recognizes that there is a real problem with respect to the economics of video games on a platform that has been compromised.

            Why should I or any of the other millions of gamers who enjoy single player with occasional use of online or multiplayer gaming be forced to change because some egotistical little shit thinks it's his god given right to break copy protection and redistribute commercially protected and copyrighted information?

            Regarding OtherOS, I remember it well, and I hated it, the tiny amount of memory was too limiting, so I didn't use it more than to try it. My point about otherOS though is that What GeoHot did with Metldr was nothing to do with hacking the firmware to allow homebrew or OtherOS functionality. All that had already been accomplished. In truth, some people hold OtherOS up like it's an overriding reason to hack the firmware to restore it. Well, if it's *that* important, why upgrade to a firmware that excludes OtherOS? why not simply stick to an older firmware if it's *that* important? The truth though is that GeoHot and others who continue to hack the firmware despite already having full hypervisor access, the ability to sign executables and the ability to load any compatible distro, are not hacking the firmware to protect or defend anyone's rights. It's a combination of ego and bloody mindedness. GeoHot in particular knew exactly what he was getting into and doing when he obtained and publicly released the metldr key. He's far too aware of the issues involved to claim ignorance of the consequences.

            I'll get downvoted again if anyone bothers to read this, and that's fine. but I will point this out one more time to make it clear what Sony is doing. Sony is suing GeoHot, not Fail0verflow. Why? because GeoHot published the important key information, Fail0verflow did not. Geohot published a key that has no purpose other than enabling game piracy. I say that because the Metldr key was *not* required to restore OtherOS capability. If you intentionally tweak the nose of the platform holder, you have to expect a response. The moves in the court case to date have been around establishing jurisdiction and the information obtained doesn't go to Sony, it's not a fishing trip for something else. the information goes to the attorneys and the court and is used solely for establishing jurisdiction. There is no invasion of privacy of millions or whatever. GeoHot brought this on himself, and personally I find it rather sad, and predictable, that the entitlement minded script kiddies of today are falling over themselves to defend him - precisely because he enables their free game play, not because of any high minded principles about hacking.

            As I've said before, if someone wants to hack the box and prove it, that's great, but if it's all about the challenge and the kudos for doing it, then there's no need to distribute the information on how to do it, to the world + dog.

  23. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I used

    I used to use my fixed ps2 to play J-RPG's with the audio fixed (e.g. no fucking American voice actors), also used it to play imports.

    Persona 3 and 4 were awesome without the American voice actors.

    However word is most ps3 games come with Japanese audio anyway, and there's still only two games I'm particularly interested in.

  24. Anonymous Coward


    Sony wouldn't get so much crap piled on them if they didn't mess shit up for their customers. I get banning cheaters online, but to stop me buying games just because I don't want to restrict my options by upgrading to the latest firmware. Pathetic.

    And Geohot even offered his services to make Sony's consoles more secure.

    F' Sony, if a "must have" exclusive comes out, I'll go preowned. And f' their future consoles.

    -Regards 3.55 Original Firmware user

    1. A handle is required


      how dare they make sure your console is up to date!

      1. Anonymous Coward

        Way to go

        and ignore the problem, all for a little masturbation.

        Console updates have removed features all in the name of security, blocked homebrew, banned people for even trying custom firmware and even brought to light how much Sony analyses what and how much you play (and I'm sure they don't give refunds for that). I held out before they removed OtherOS, but then gave that up (unwillingly) just so I could buy a game I thought was awesome and support that developer. I won't support this. I bought a console and I should be able to use that as I wish, short of piracy and affecting others.

        At least Microsoft had it right from the start, with the exception of the RROD, and even Sony has the YLOD...

        1. Anonymous Coward

          As you said yourself, "in the name of security"

          The updates are designed to block cheaters and homebrew software. The first part is obvious. As for homebrew software: can you think of any examples that aren't designed for cheating or circumventing copy protection? The "Oh, I just want to run custom software for reason XYZ" argument is a bunch of horse shit. Consoles are for gaming. If you want a device you can tear into without any regard for other users, get a computer.

          1. Vic

            Absence of fertiliser...

            > The "Oh, I just want to run custom software for reason XYZ" argument is a bunch of horse shit

            It isn't.

            I don't own a PS3. I had planned to buy a couple, specifically for the purpose of experimenting with the architecture. I'm rubbish at games, so I'd probably not have bought any.

            Luckily for me, Sony blew away my plans *before* I'd spent any money.


        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          XBox Fanboy Alert

          @ Anonymous Coward 15:33 GMT

          Microsoft had it right from the start eh? And you say with the exception of the RROD as though it is a blip. No, Microsoft didn't have it right from the start. Everything to do with Microsofts console is basic and proprietary. From wireless to hard drives, you had to buy from Microsoft at extortionate costs. AND THERE WERE SERIOUS PROBLEMS with the Xbox for about 4 years before they finally fixed it - if they actually have. But XBox fanboys deny this!

          Why do I call you a fanboy? Because you bring up the Yellow Light of Death. Only XBox fanboys do this. I know, because I sit opposite one at work. Bring up the serious problems with the XBox and he immediately goes on to say Sony has a YLoD problem and it is serious. Blah blah blah. Hate to tell you but the YLoD only seem to have affected the 1st generation of PS3's, and then not all of them. I know a lot of PS3 owners and only one console has been replaced - due to his son breaking it! Nearly all Xbox owners are at least on their second console - some third. I can honestly say that only one that I know of still has his first XBox console - a rarity indeed.

          And yes, they have removed the OtherOS. What have we got in return? Well, for starters they have turned your PS3 into both a Blu-Ray player capable of playing 3D films if you want to. And also it is capable of playing 3D games. These things haven't taken off yet but if they do Sony have basically saved all PS3 users about £100+ as they do not need to go out and purchase the player when they get a 3D TV. Did they charge for this great extra thing they have given us? No.

          And to all the morons blasting Sony about the CD Rootkit. Please note this: It was Sony America who did this, on their own, without the knowledge of the Sony Corporation. The head office in Japan were not happy about this and they have taken steps to ensure it will never happen again.

          Please people, get a life! Sony have taken with one hand but given with the other. What they have given will save you money in the long run!

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      There is a solution

      You can still play all the latest games, you just need to find the now popular cracks. All Sony has done is to guide paying customers into arms of the pirate. Looks like an own goal to me.

  25. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    It's not hacktivism, it's slacktivism. For a start there is no hacking involved, and for seconds activism implies some sort of action. Sitting on at your computer and downloading something that someone told you to (LOIC) and then pointing it at the "enemy de jour" is hardly being galvanised into action. It also demonstrates the level to which most of anonymous' "members" are willing to participate, in that they mainly seem to be impotent rage on the Internet, but won't actually back that up by leaving the house, writing to their MP, even writing to the "enemy de jour" to let them know how they think, etc.

    I've got more sympathy for the protesters outside Huntingdon Life Sciences, I don't agree with them at all, but at least they've bothered to get up and get out in order to let people know what they're about and what they believe in.

    1. Anonymous Coward

      The title is required, and must contain letters and/or digits.

      They were more physically active against Scientology, but then, Scientology kills and wrecks lives. I went to the trouble of telling Sony how I felt and that I would not purchase anything from them again and as a salesman, I would not offer their gaming product unless requested by the customer. But as they say, if you fuck a beehive...

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward


        >>"But as they say, if you fuck a beehive..."

        Though if a beehive is the analogy, how long *does* the average worker bee last, even if it doesn't manage to sting anyone?

  26. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Assange to have new cellmates

    The morons at Anonymous just don't get it, but they will when they end up sharing a prison cell with Assange.

  27. Anonymous Coward

    Someone lock these idiots up already

    they're nothing more than a bunch of hooligans.

    Geohot's legal action with Sony was way back in Jan. Talk about digging up old shit to throw.

    1. sT0rNG b4R3 duRiD

      They're doing something about it _now_.

      Perhaps, not a very effective way at present if it's just DDOS. But who knows what else is on the cards?

      What have you done about it?

      Don't worry. You still can. Recognise the Evil that Sony is. *BOYCOTT* them. Spread the word.

      Honestly, who needs their Bravia TVs, PSPs, PS3s etc, Sony-Ericsson phones and media (remember here how much they actually control)?

      You have the *rest* of the world to live in.

      Consider that.

      (Caveat: Yes, I am a bitter ex-Sony fan. I still believe the PS3 is/was the best games console yet. But Sony really f***ed us over. I do not forget easy).

  28. Morpho Devilpepper

    Anonymous =

    Seems to me this is typical terrorist practice...attack your target by harming (or at least inconveniencing) innocents.

    Denying people the use of what they've already paid for does not hurt Sony, it hurts their customers. It's more than heavy handed, and a bit narcissistic, to think that your actions against a target are important enough that you can just disregard the collateral damage.

    That's not the least bit heroic; it's cowardly and despicable. I pay for my Netflix subscription via PS3 and I damned well expect to be able to use it.

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