Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Sony's Hack-Proof PS3 to Provide Basis for NGP Security? Will there be a death-switch?

After the trauma of seeing its once-secure console repeatedly violated, Sony is supposed to be planning a new version that will defeat the hackers. After the far-worse trauma that befell the PSP (with something like less than two out of 10 games played being purchased), its fair to assume that Sony will bolt whatever technology the company comes up with for this new PS3 into the NGP.

But you have to bet on the crackers getting through eventually and I wonder when companies will start throwing in a death-switch that starts killing consoles once the terms-of-service have been violated, say, three times by playing pirated games, by refusing to update the software or some other condition.

Sure, NGP has another four years of anti-piracy research to fall back-on, but if Sony is going far enough to claim that the new version will be hack-proof (which is a fairly massive claim in a world of hackers armed with patience and cyber tools that can bring multinationals to their knees), then it would make sense for the PS3 code to follow into its new little brother.

Hopefully Sony's latest pain will see a more secure NGP and one that developers will see is a fortress for which they can continue to have a long and happy relationship with. But the death-switch would be the ultimate sanction and one that has to come eventually if there really is no such thing as hack-proof.


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