Hackers can't seem to get enough of Sony. Amid the chaos ensuing from the massive hack of Sony Pictures' internal computer network, the Sony PlayStation Network (PSN) has received another attack purported to have been done by Lizard Squad. Thankfully, however, PSN is now back online.
On Dec. 8, Sony PlayStation posted an update on Twitter, saying customers could log in to their PSN accounts again after users reported that they were having difficulty logging in.
If you had difficulties signing into PlayStation Network, give it a try now.
— PlayStation (@PlayStation) December 8, 2014
The same is posted on the PSN Status Page, which says that the network is currently online. Last weekend, players trying to enter PSN were greeted with the message "Page Not Found! It's not you. It's the Internet's fault." Sony confirmed on Twitter that its systems crashed following a distributed denial of service (DDoS) attack, which attempts to take down servers by sending loads of fake traffic to the PSN website.
PSN update: we are aware of the issues some users are experiencing, and are working to address them. We'll keep you updated. — PlayStation (@PlayStation) December 8, 2014
After being down from 6:52 p.m. to 9:18 p.m. EST on Dec. 7, PSN is now back online. Sony says it is currently investigating who is behind the attack and why, but spokesperson Jennifer Clark says no evidence has been found that user information has been stolen. While Sony is still verifying who is responsible for the latest PSN hack, a group called Lizard Squad has claimed culpability. It does not explain why, but the PSN attack comes just days after it claimed to launch a similar attack on Xbox Live for Xbox 360. The group tweeted the following on Sunday.
PSN Login #offline #LizardSquad — Lizard Squad (@LizardPatrol) December 8, 2014
Just a couple of days before that, Lizard Squad fired off a similar tweet about Xbox Live.
It is unclear if Lizard Squad actually launched both attacks, but the timing of tweets coincide with the time of the attacks. The group has also claimed responsibility for similar other attacks in the past.
In August, Lizard Squad said it was behind another DDoS attack on PSN servers while posting a bomb threat on Twitter to an American Airlines flight that was ferrying Sony Online Entertainment President John Smedley to San Diego. The bomb threat caught the attention of federal investigators and the flight was diverted to Phoenix, where it landed safely.
Lizard Squad claims to be protesting Sony's "greed," a similar line of reasoning of Guardians of Peace, the hacking group responsible for the catastrophic cyber intrusion of Sony Pictures' internal systems last month. It seems, though, that Lizard Squad has plans to continue the attacks well into the holiday season.
Unlike Santa, we don't like giving all of our Christmas presents out on one day. This entire month will be entertaining. #LizardSquad
— Lizard Squad (@LizardPatrol) December 6, 2014The current Sony attacks, however, are not related, says a security researcher.
"It is not uncommon for smaller groups to try and capitalize on a wave associated with a huge data breach or attack, and it is possible that this is what has happened in this case with Sony," says an IT researcher at Kaspersky Labs.