Sony demands identities from Google, Twitter in PS3 hacking lawsuit

By on February 8, 2011, 1:30 PM
Sony is threatening to sue anybody posting or distributing the jailbreak code for its PlayStation 3 gaming console. Furthermore, the electronics giant is demanding that a federal judge order Google and Twitter to surrender details of those involved, according to court documents "To the Declaration of Holly Gaudreau in Support of Motion for Expedited Discovery" (PDF: Exhibit J, Exhibit M), obtained by Wired.

For Google, Sony wants the search company to hand over the IP addresses and other identifying information of those who have viewed or commented about the jailbreak video posted on YouTube. For Twitter, Sony wants the social network to provide the identities of a host of hackers with the identities @KaKaRoToKS, @gnihsub, @pytey, @bl4sty, @marcan42, and @fail0verflow.

Thousands if not millions have viewed the hack on YouTube, which was posted by George Hotz, also known as GeoHot. Finding out their identities would allow the company to legally stop any other people hosting and distributing the hack. Last week, Hotz complied with US District Judge Susan Illston's order to remove the YouTube video and the code from his personal website. GeoHot has also been ordered to hand over his computers to Sony by Thursday and to retrieve every instance of his code but Stewart Kellar, his lawyer, is petitioning Illston to reconsider on the grounds that the former is way too excessive and the latter is impossible.

The group known as fail0verflow has not revealed its members' whereabouts. Sony thus can't haul them into court. If Twitter complies, however, it could be very problematic for the group, depending on where they are located, of course. The group is accused of posting a rudimentary hack in December 2010 after finding security codes for the PS3. It was refined by Hotz weeks later when he independently found and published the PS3 root key.

Sony's legal attacks against the hackers that released the PlayStation 3 root key and custom firmware began last month. The hack allows homebrew apps and pirated software to run on unmodified consoles.


Add New Comment

TechSpot Members
Login or sign up for free,
it takes about 30 seconds.
You may also...
Get complete access to the TechSpot community. Join thousands of technology enthusiasts that contribute and share knowledge in our forum. Get a private inbox, upload your own photo gallery and more.