Hacking Video Game Publishers: The Pointless Crusade

Sony, Nintendo, Bethesda, Codemasters and Sega have one thing in common, aside from publishing video games.

They were all hacked.

Turns out, the skilled hackers that crippled Sony’s PlayStation Network inadvertently (perhaps intentionally) started a movement within the community, the desire to break into and therefore embarrass (perhaps financially damage) other companies. Some do it for kicks. Others, to obtain information illegally.

It sounds like something out of Robin Hood, a group of talented outlaws sticking it to the man and rewarding the people, except that’s not what these hackers do.

They have the rich part nailed down, but there’s no singular message. We don’t condone hacking, but at the very least, it would be easier to grasp the reason behind it if said hackers rallied against something, like overpriced video games, malfunctioning hardware or some other perceived injustice.

At least everyone got a free copy of Pursuit Force, right?

Doing it for laughs? That’s silly, but hey, it’s nowhere as bad as grabbing millions of personal accounts and posting them online/selling them to the highest bidder. That’s robbing from the rich and the poor.

Which leads us to the following: what’s the point? Is it to one up rival hackers, or is there some underground movement to take down the video game industry?

Regardless, we’d appreciate it if the ones responsible stopped. Having PlayStation Network down for over a month hurt Sony (if that was the goal, mission accomplished), but it also hurt gamers and, we’d like to think, other hackers who play games.

Bottom line, there appears to be little to gain from breaching Nintendo’s defenses, or for that matter, Codemasters.

What are they searching for? The next DiRT?

[Editor’s note: We’d love to interview some of the hackers responsible to learn more about this troubling issue. Anonymously, of course.]

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