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Sony enlists help to fight mounting Anonymous attacks

It's been a rough week for Sony. After posting its declaration of war last Friday, the online hacker group Anonymous has followed through on its threats to issue distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks on Sony's websites. In the past few days, the group has downed the likes of PlayStation.com and UK's PlayStatioBlog, crippled the PlayStation Network, posted personal information on Sony big-wigs, and has generally made life difficult for the electronics giant. Not content to take the fight lying down, Sony has now hired its own internet muscle to shore up its online defences.

Anonymous' attacks, motivated by the desire to see Sony punished for pursuing litigation against PS3 hackers GeoHotz and Graf_Chokolo, have forced Sony to hired DDoS defense firm Prolexic; an experienced company which, according to its website, has been “[providing] online businesses with the most advanced protection available against DDoS attacks and malicious botnet activity” for nearly 7 years.



The move has caught the attention of Anonymous supporters, including those in the SonyRecon splinter group. One such proponent, Takai, recently reached out to PlayStation Lifestyle, declaring, “[Hiring Prolexic] was expected. We knew sooner or later Sony would enlist outside help. If I had to put money on it … I’d say, Prolexic is going down like a two dollar whore in a Nevada chicken ranch.”

Takai acknowledged Prolexic is a strong foe to contend with, but believes Anonymous' attacks are just gearing up and the worst is yet to come, stating, “So far, all Sony has seen from us is poking and prodding. A simple salute to let them know, we’re coming. Make no mistake, what you saw today and thought to be frustration is merely preparation for what’s to come. We said, expect us. Counting us out, would be a mistake.”

It's next to impossible to document the back-and-forth between Anonymous and Sony, since battles are being won and lost within the span of minutes, and we won't know the real damage until the dust settles. One thing is certain: at the time of publishing, the DDoS attacks have affected the PlayStation Network, thereby hurting everyday gamers who could give a crap about Anonymous' objectives and just want to kill their friends in peace. Collateral damage is to be expected, but one has to wonder what Anonymous considers victory and if this latest campaign is even remotely close to achieving it.

[Source: PlayStation LifeStyle]

April 6, 2011

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Anonymous declares war on Sony in support of GeoHot
Faceless internet 'hacktivists' begins DDoS attacks on Sony sites




Sony granted permission to identify hacker Geohot's website visitors
Sony to subpoena PS3 hacker's provider for users' personal information




German PS3 hacker's house raided by police
graf_chokolo releases hacker's manifesto as revenge

89 comments

  • Markstone - April 7, 2011 8:48 p.m.

    @ Dintin: I'm confused as to how being annoyed at the loss of PSN (even for a short amount of time) equates me to sucking a corporation's non-existent dick, but based on your point that this affair is a result of Japanese culture I guess you really just don't get what you're talking about. And yes, "shame" on Sony for being protective of ITS intellectual property.
  • JakeyBaby - April 7, 2011 7:30 p.m.

    Anon are the evil ones here. I work hard, don't get much money but it puts food on my plate. Let's say the company I work for goes under because of this pathetic pointless war against capitalism... Yeah not so fun once you realise how many people you put out of a job while fighting against the 'big scary coorporation'...
  • Joshin69 - April 7, 2011 5:51 p.m.

    I've lost all my game saves because of this shit! All because of bunch of "C U next Tuesdays" have an axe to grind. 1000's of hours of gameplay! Fuck you, you fekless faceless fucks.
  • presc1ence - April 7, 2011 5:45 p.m.

    and the smart ones will wait a little bit then offer their services to sony. and then get paid for reversign the stuff they have done. classinc hacker employment scam!lol!
  • BurntToShreds - April 7, 2011 5:21 p.m.

    When you accept the EULA, you are signing into a license. This license allows you to do many things, but finding a method of getting games for free, and then distributing that method to everyone on the Internet who cares, that is not allowed. What GeoHot did does not only hurt SCEA, it hurts all of the developers that make games the PS3, since their games are the ones being stolen. The SCEA (NOT Sony's global corporation; Sony's American branch) took GeoHot to court. This is entirely legal, because the SCEA is trying to protect its source of income. Anonymous is protesting a legal action (Taking GeoHot to court) with an illegal action (DDoS'ing SCEA). This whole thing shows self-entitled gamers can really be, and how it ruins the gaming community.
  • SalvadorZombie - April 7, 2011 3:34 p.m.

    So, because they're interfering with your precious escapism, you're against independent rebellion and damn the consequences? It's a good thing you people weren't the majority in the 1700s. Sony is CLEARLY pulling their weight, they have been for years - when you buy something, it's YOURS. You have the right to do whatever you want to it, as long as you don't then use it for illegal means. This is the equivalent of Ford putting out a ToS that states that, by buying and driving their automobiles, owners agree not to modify their VEHICLES. If you don't see the correlation, then...well, I just don't know what to say. Quit bitching about your precious ignorance, and look at the big picture. BTW - hacking itself is not illegal. As long as it's done within the letter of the law, it's legal. And LEGAL doesn't always equal JUST.
  • karyuudo - April 7, 2011 2:05 p.m.

    As much as I sympathize those using the PSN, Sony had this coming with their lawsuits against Geohot and graf_chokolo. Neither of these guys did anything wrong. They bought a product, chose to "hack" away at it to get Linux back on to the system (which Sony ILLEGALLY took away) and now these two are being sued for taking back control of a product that THEY bought. If Geohot or graf_chokolo were selling pirated software, or if they released a Custom Firmware for the PS3 as a way of allowing pirated software to be played then I wouldn't blame Sony for going after them. However, neither have done this and neither of them condone piracy. I don't condone everything that Anonymous does, but someone has to tell the big companies out there that they can't just go around bullying people when they do something with their product that they don't approve of. If Sony doesn't like people modifying their console, don't sell them in the first place. See below to Anonymous's latest message to Sony: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tcSCUU4Fg9k&feature=player_embedded I don't think their request is unreasonable. Sony needs to start thinking about how their actions effect everyone out there.
  • wittynickname - April 7, 2011 1:52 p.m.

    Hey, Matt Bradford. The phrase you were looking for is "thereby hurting everyday gamers who COULDN'T give a crap..." From your friendly neighborhood Pissy English Major fighting the good fight, willfully ignoring the futility.
  • pikachu2000 - April 7, 2011 12:33 p.m.

    It's Sony vs. cyber-terrorists Who will win in this pointless battle of epic egos Stay tuned as Gamesradar gives you nonstop up to the minute covarge of this ongoing kick-ass cyberwar!!! OK, kidding aside, let's be serious for a moment: I think this whole hacking mess is an inside job and have nothing to do with the Other OS option being stripped away. Just think about it for a miniute. Why was there no suscessful attack on the PS3 until last year? I know the hackers are smart and are capable of hacking anything in less than a year after a product has been released. It should've been hacked way long before before now. So what happened? Somebody who work at the Sony tech dept who know the code got pissed off by Sony for not paying them enough money and got fired and snuck the code out and scerectly give it to people like George Hotz, a great scapegoat that got everbody's attention as soon as he release it, the former Sony tech guy slowly fade away in the dark giving away secrects to those who want to see Sony go down in flames. All I can say is that there is a law and ignorance of the law is no excuse. There is no honor among thevies. They will band together to kill a common foe and be back at each other's throats when it done. Everything is corrupted. There are no good or bad guys, just gray.
  • FanofSaiyan - April 7, 2011 12:22 p.m.

    Better be careful GR, if you piss of Anon you might end up getting DDoS too! I wouldn't want that. :(
  • Shuuvuia - April 7, 2011 12:07 p.m.

    Isn't the whole point of Anonymous to secure the freedom to pass information on the internet. Well there making it pretty darn hard for PSN gamers to do that right now. It's only wrong when we're not the ones doing it, I suppose?
  • foxxjeh - April 7, 2011 11:25 a.m.

    I believe Sony is getting what they deserve out of this, I follow gaming news a lot, and I saw the way Sony reacted towards all the hacker problems. Picture a spoiled rich kid, through money around to get what they want. Many PS3 consumers forced to live by Sony's rules, you pay them money, and the terms of service equal something close to "you are now Sony's bitch" this has been like this practically since day 1. Hacking falls into that shady grey area, it can be questionable and ambiguous at times, companies do it all the time, I'm sure Microsoft and Nintendo have both bought a few PS3s disassembled and researched the shit out of them, so they can make a variation of the same thing with a few tweaks, and make money from it. But when a small time guy does this at home with no budget and no lucrative interest, they flail their arms like a whiny 12 year old, abuse their power to use law enforcers as their own personal cronies. So yeah I do think Sony bought this on them selves, and I do think they deserve it.
  • grayguwapo - April 7, 2011 10:16 a.m.

    I will repeat... Anonymous = morons... it's the everyday gamer that gets affected... we could care less about the issues between sony and hotz... stupid anonymous! just leave the gamers at peace... if you have nothing better to do, just stay in your parent's basement and eat twinkies the whole day like the wusses you are... sheesh!!!
  • majorlynch - April 7, 2011 10:05 a.m.

    Thanks for nothing hackers. You're not impressing anyone Get lives!!!!
  • Hazgibbon - April 7, 2011 9:45 a.m.

    Sony as an organisation have down lots of things that have turned my stomach such as the rootkit thing, the shutting down of Lik-Sang and all that emotion engine nonesense. I don't think these Annonymous attacks are helping anyone though. Although it does amuse me.
  • jmcgrotty - April 7, 2011 9:44 a.m.

    Time for a couple replies to comments: Moondoggie said " I hope sony gets what's coming to them"... trust me, they will: there will absolutely no real effect and live will go on like it didn't happen. Anon474 said "the thousands of systems bricked by the 3.56 HDD upgrade error"... you mean the error that was patched within 3 days and only affected people who just happened to try switching out their hard drive in that time, while also formatting their old one before making sure there is no problem with the new one? AlphaAgent: How did Geo not mean any harm? It is asinine to think that he didn't know what the thing would be used for. Also, you said " it come under the fair use trade"... This isn't true. As of now, no it hasn't been declared to be under the "fair use trade." So far, the only reason that people say this is because some cell phones were ruled to fall under that situation. MAYBE in the future, Sony will have it declared that, but it hasn't happened yet. BellaKazza said "We have a right to do what we want with our own consoles and we have a right to spread infomation." Says who? Legally speaking, there isn't any right to do what you want yet. You just mean you think you should have that right. (This next one I may be wrong about on a techicality since it is more towards software. But the basis is still behind the EULA argument) RareHero said "There's no law that says you cannot modify what is rightfully yours"... actually, there is (in the U.S.). In the case of Vernor v. Autodesk at the 9th circuit court, it was ruled that "that a software user is a licensee rather than an owner of a copy where the copyright owner (1) specifies that the user is granted a license"... In other words, legally you are buying the license, not the physical product. One wrinkle with that is that I don't remember if there is an EULA for the initial install of a PS3, though even beyond that, some courts have said that you are responsible for any EULA that is packaged with something else. There was another court case I was going to mention, but I'm just way too tired now.
  • mentalityljs - April 7, 2011 7:44 a.m.

    @ BellaKazza That's exactly what I meant! Maybe I should use a different analogy, and this is strictly hypothetical. So here's my re-iteration: So, you're saying that it's ok for a burglar to break into ur moms house just for fun, and then share with a whole online community of criminals exactly HOW to break into her house so they could do the same and potentially even worse? What Sony is doing is protecting theirs, and every multi-platform developers' investments so that we, as gamers, can enjoy all the great upcoming titles we have to look forward to for years to come. WHY is that so hard to understand?
  • jcsackboy - April 7, 2011 6:13 a.m.

    @ JetBlackAssassin Very well said. And 360 fanboys. If you seriously think that not that many xboxs are hacked, then you are wrong. I know about 50 people with 360s and 45 of them have it j-logged. If that is the correct term.
  • Crabhand - April 7, 2011 5:27 a.m.

    @Blue2 That is a slippery slope argument if I've ever seen one. It's not as if Sony's failed lawsuit would cause them to close their doors and call it quits, and neither would it legitimize piracy and bring the industry to it's knees. I would wager only a small percentage of PS3 users would actually hack their PS3 to pirate games, especially given the permanent PSN ban on your console if one gets caught. The likely worst case scenario is the DRM controversies that PC publishers have been dealing with would likely migrate to consoles, It would not be the end of Sony's entire enterprise if a few people pirated games, and Microsoft isn't going to completely buttfuck their consumers for no reason. Even in a world without Sony, NINTENDO STILL EXISTS. Microsoft wouldn't just hand them the entire market share and cause "hardcore" titles to jump ship with the consumers. Nothing you said makes sense and is probably some of the most ridiculous speculation I've seen today.
  • JetBlackAssassin - April 7, 2011 3:55 a.m.

    First of all when you buy a ps3 (or almost anything really) with your hard earned money, you cannot do whatever you want with it (legally of course). Legally you agreed to Sony's terms of agreement on the product. You can play it(yes). You can watch stuff on it(yes) and a bunch of other things not related to hacking, and in a sense hacking is not so bad. Sad thing is you are actually limited to those kinds of things, which is not really morally bad: if you don't like sony's terms buy another console, oh but wait Microsoft, Nintendo, Apple and most other corporations have the same terms, drat. If you want to buy the rights to the ps3 to do whatever you want with it, be my guest (shell out billions of dollars) which is to purchase it from sony. Capitalism works this way. Corporation A earns profit, pays employees their wage etc etc and this works well enough. So I want you to define greed. Imagine a man in his 40's, he is pretty rich, he's hardworking and overall just like a normal dude. That could be the COO/CEO of sony. Not everyone who works at a corporation can be evil, that would be statistically improbable. We live in a world dependent on corporations, now think of all of them. Intel, Nvidia, ATi, ASUS, ACER, WD, SEAGATE, GOOGLE, YAHOO, MICROSOFT, SONY, NINTENDO, APPLE, PROCTER AND GAMBLE, FACEBOOK to name a few of more than a billion corporations and companies. In this particular case all of them would have done the same thing. Is sony an evil company? I don't know. Are they greedy? I don't know. Are they ripping us off? Maybe, I don't know, but I do know that it made perfect sense for them to try and protect their brand and product, maybe they could have handled it better though. Now what exactly did Mr.Geohotz do? Well he released a code on the internet that would (eventually) let people play any game for free. Games that were developed by the Game developers (Insomniac, Epic Games etc) sold to us consumers to play. That would eventually cripple profits from game developers, not necessarily sony (except first party stuff). That disrupts the chain a large chain that I would not care to further explain. (it's probably in wikipedia or something) In the end this battle would not have accomplished anything. If you follow anonymous movements throughout the years, they did a lot of good stuff trying to protect consumer rights, but in this case they maybe misguided. @bengimon85 really? screaming Xbox 360 for life? well it's kinda true anyway what with me still waiting for bungie's next thing, oh wait it's gonna be multi plat oh well. Anyway Microsoft did not beef up security, well actually they did but that did not solve anything. What they did was prevent people with modded(to play bootlegs) Xbox's to go online. Which is kinda what Sony's doing plus banning your psn so it's mostly the same. Most ps3 people are actually proud their console was piracy free for so many years and it seemed like a new turn for the industry, too late for that. Still, spreading information? Really and you had to chose the one piece of information that would start rampant piracy on a console. I mean isn't this what we are all about? Playing video games. What I cherish because of all the things I've learned from it? What I cherish because of the countless UNIQUE stories I have INTERACTIVELY EXPERIENCED. I cherish this medium because of how it out paces all other forms of entertainment in terms of evolution and revolution. Of how fast it is growing into its own, into something better, into something that Can and Will rival all other mediums in an effective capacity. We cherish this medium because of us, because of our tight knit community. Because of the special bond we have like the bond of musicians to other musicians like book readers to other book readers and I want to keep it this way. I hope all this bull $h3t ends. Because we are the GAMING INDUSTRY F*ck Yeah! Amen Mother F#ck3s! GAMESRADAR FTW! (Cough* cough* sorry drank too much rootbeer)

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