Spain apprehends alleged PSN hackers - Report

[UPDATE] Wall Street Journal reports three men caught in connection with PSN denial-of-service attack, not the theft of users' personal data.

In April, hackers broke into Sony's online network, gaining access to the personal information and passwords of some 77 million PSN and Qriosity accounts. The attacks were believed to have been conducted by Anonymous, a decentralized group of hackers who it turns out might not be as unknown as their name suggests.

The hackers might not have been as anonymous as previously thought.

According to the New York Times, Spanish police today confirmed that they apprehended three men in connection with the Sony security breach. The police believe they were involved not only with the attacks on Sony, but with other strikes against government websites the world over, and characterized the trio as the local heads of Anonymous.

The three men--all in their early 30s--were apprehended in Almeria, Barcelona, and Valencia, and released pending formal charges. According to the paper, the expected charges will be forming an illegal association to attack public and corporate websites, with each facing a prison sentence of up to three years.

The PSN outage first began on April 20, when Sony brought down the service ostensibly for just a few days. It wasn't until mid-May that the gaming company began restoring PSN functionality.

On June 1, Sony restored service to the PlayStation Store, giving gamers the chance to once again engage in digital commerce through the online platform, with full restoration achieved earlier this week. Sony has also begun offering a selection of free games and other perks for affected PS3 and PSP users to make up for the outage. According to a financial report by Sony, the attack is expected to cost the company more than $171 million.

[UPDATE]: The Wall Street Journal is reporting that the Anonymous trio was not arrested in connection with the personal data theft that brought PSN services down for a month. The paper cites the head of the Spanish police's high-tech crimes division as saying the three were picked up for their role in denial-of-service attacks on Sony servers.

In early April, Anonymous first made Sony a public target of its activities and disrupted the company's PlayStation websites and PSN for a couple of days. However, Anonymous called for an end to such activities, saying they were hurting consumers instead of the actual target, Sony.

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850 comments
neverwinter578
neverwinter578

personaly i don't care me mum took my psp during the school year (VERY annoying) and i didn't know intil sony sent me an email and i was like WHAT THE F**K. at least there was no money on my account then, but, HELL YEAH @ free games killzone liberation is pretty good littlebigplanet takes a slow @ss time to load though can downlaod them both with only 2gb card D@MN!

JohnF111
JohnF111

They were only arrested for the DDOS? Damn that means they'll claim a civil protest and get off scot-free unless the judge owns a PS3 of course.

Superzone
Superzone

Wish there were some pictures of these losers. I want to see what these momma's boys look like. Probably fat and greasy with skin as pale as Casper the ghost because they haven't seen sunlight in years.

SibirskiyTigr
SibirskiyTigr

I find it silly that anonymous claims they didnt want to target customers...they why take all of those credit card numbers and personal info?

MuffintopX
MuffintopX

No one suspects the Spanish Inquisition!!!

kmaoO
kmaoO

I hope they beat the cr@p out of them. I could not play my last decent hours of RDR coop and now LA NOIRE is sucking all my time. Still gonna get back to John Marston, still hope they beat their @sses and still hope a DLC chapter of RDR comes out xD

DevilUchiha2
DevilUchiha2

i would give them death penalty,who do they think they are,what a no life losers

spitfire2010
spitfire2010

@Frosty192 Im talking about a service. Im not saying its better.

J_I_B_B_E_R
J_I_B_B_E_R

Hackers are spitefull leeches, alot of the time only doing this sort of stuff for no other reason than to feed their own egos, throw them in jail I say!

Warlord_Irochi
Warlord_Irochi

@Strychnine IT's not like our police is THAT extreme... but personal information is something that is particulary important in Spain (In Europe in general, in fact). So I see certain that they'll be hitting jail.

Warlord_Irochi
Warlord_Irochi

@emperiox 77 Million account in a single attack. The charge is for that attack and the general damage caused, not for each of the account hacked (That would be quite insane and would take forever).

raptures330
raptures330

[This message was deleted at the request of the original poster]

Razorlight6
Razorlight6

@liquid_plasma @farmerfredd The $171 million cost may also include projected loss of revenue from potential future customers choosing not to buy Playstations, and by extension games, peripherals, online purchases, and expensive Sony 3D HDTV's to go along with new systems. There are also marketing and public relations costs to convince people that they are trustworthy. It's not just about the losses during the outage and the security tightening, but the perception and integrity of the brand going forward.

maxwell97
maxwell97

@raptures330: "You are taking a view of the world like if it was a happy fantasy that things should work the way it ideally should. That people only speak and never act because of what they hear or say. There are limits to everything you can say and do." Actually, I think you're the one viewing the world in a happy fantasy. In your fantasy, governments can be trusted to decide what is or is not appropriate for the people to say. In your fantasy, there's a nice clean line to draw between "speech" and "hate speech." In your fantasy, the power that you would give government will only be used for good. But, in reality, a government with that kind of power is a far greater threat to our freedom to live than any group of redneck trailer-trash posting anti-Semitic rants on the internet. In reality, it's hateful gangs that kill dozens, and governments that kill millions. In reality, ANY speech can be called "hate speech" if enough people dislike what's being said - as you have elegantly proven, by accusing me of supporting Nazis, when in fact I support only their right to free speech. Should I be thrown in prison for that? Locked up as a dangerous hatemonger? What say you, oh mighty arbiter of the goodness of my words?

alexLmx6
alexLmx6

Eyewitness reports say the men were seen being removed from their mothers' basements wearing Batman underwear and clutching their "arrullo para bebe".

Tacojoint
Tacojoint

what if theyre not the hackers and sony is just playing us so that well be happy, i mean sony lied to us so many times during the outage, i might be wrong though

Tacojoint
Tacojoint

i bet you all the thumbs down that everybody has are from either low life hackers or nerds thinking that hacking is ok.XD

raze-boi
raze-boi

@farmerfredd I agree with you totally, at least there's a person who understands that everything has a cost, especially the opportunity cost.

farmerfredd
farmerfredd

@liquid_plasma Think about it. A month of no online revenue from online purchases. No online effecting sales of physical copies. The money they had to dump into new security, outsourcing to analyze their system...etc.

liquid_plasma
liquid_plasma

Yup 3 dudes cost Sony $171 million for ctrl+c a list of #'s..... i dont buy that.... sounds like BS to me.

CapnSparklyPJs
CapnSparklyPJs

I'd like to see what they have to say in 3 years when they're finally out of prison, maybe they'll learn their lesson.

TrueHeroX850
TrueHeroX850

Nice to hear. Finally I feel safe when I use the playstation store.

StJimmy15
StJimmy15

@Frosty192 "Just because you pay for something does not make it better" hahah, oh you. Ever heard the expression, "you get what you pay for"? Thats why we got service, and you didn't for over a month. Just sayin, idc what little excuses you can make up, the bottomline is that PSN went down hard.

Izak80
Izak80

They brought this on themselves.

Frosty192
Frosty192

@spitfire2010 People like you make me laugh. Just because you pay for something DOES NOT make it better. I am sorry but that is the truth. If microsoft cracked down on the console hackers like sony did they would be in the same boat. Look at all these other companies that are being hacked right now. Do I really need to say more? End this damn discussion about how much better LIVE is it is getting freaking old.

Frosty192
Frosty192

Even if they only did the DOS attack, still give them either some jail time or a hefty fine since they still made psn go down for a couple days.

raptures330
raptures330

@feryl06 These guys were arrested from an operation started in October when they attacked the Ministry of Culture in Spain for furthering an agenda making certain downloads and sites illegal (it is much deeper and complicated than this, but that is the jist of it) as well as attacks on other governments sites like in Libya. They might be linked to the DoS of the PSN Store but have so far have NOTHING to do with the info theft that caused Sony to take down PSN. One was arrested back in May, others more recently. Exact dates were not given. They are all out of jail, without bail, pending actual and formal charges. Just google the news "hackers spain" and look through some articles. They stopped updating this. It's a gaming site, not a news site in the end.

spitfire2010
spitfire2010

Regardless of apprehention. Sony's security system was horrible, they got their Sony Online website hacked moments after PSN came back online, sure it was minor but its still a breach in their once proud security measures. In the end PSN is free and not a paid monthly service at large.

feryl06
feryl06

so, these weren't the guys that attacked SONY? i'm confused... "The Wall Street Journal is reporting that the Anonymous trio was not arrested in connection with the personal data theft that brought PSN services down for a month."

sieg6529
sieg6529

@rarson - true, but it makes for a better story to label them as some evil cohesive group.

boricuasnake04
boricuasnake04

3 years i would actually be up for a public stoning

Wizgot
Wizgot

You know, in jail they now give convicts Playstations. They know what you did. I bet they be real pissed.

hitechgraphs
hitechgraphs

But this trio of losers is even dangerous for their own government country to leave them go away just like nothing.

nickery123
nickery123

better be 30 if they were behind psn or its stoning time....

lujanr32
lujanr32

that makes no sense, 3 years? wow make the punishment fit the crime, more than 77 million peoples accounts were held hostage, and all they get is 3 years?....wow guess good things really DO happen to bad people

raptures330
raptures330

@maxwell97 You are taking a view of the world like if it was a happy fantasy that things should work the way it ideally should. That people only speak and never act because of what they hear or say. There are limits to everything you can say and do. Your freedom to speak (which allows you to convince others to act) and act ends when someone's freedom to live and live peacefully begins. You can go on about how you think white houses are horrible and should not be allowed to be painted like that and even petition your government to get white paint abolished. But when you start saying that everyone who has lived or lives in white houses is a subhuman and should be violently persecuted, humiliated, and killed... you no longer have the right to keep talking and promoting those ideas. NeoNazism is not a "bad" idea. Isn't that a nice way at looking at people who thought killing 7 million people based on their religion and causing WW2 which culminated in more than 50 million dead world wide was good. It is a movement that incites and glorifies violence against people of certain religions, races. And if you think that happened a long time ago and hate-mongering does not get to those degrees anymore. Here, our first genocide this century: Darfur. Just another day for ethnic cleansers who have the right to express, recruit, and carry out their ideas. Freedom right? I'm done. Enjoy supporting them.

BudgetMonkey82
BudgetMonkey82

These hackers have acted maliciously and deserve to be made an example of in terms of punishment.

neck_romancer
neck_romancer

Sort this out sony, still can't log into my account nor i can ceate a new one. 'site down for maintenance' is seriously doing my head in.

strayfies
strayfies

Would any of us spare mobsters for adding some higher message to their crimes? I hope not. These hackers need to be dealt with, I'm tired of checking my bank account out of fear. Especially just for them to "send a message". Get a facebook account if you're that desperate.

True_KING
True_KING

hackers are the bane of existence, when you hack all you hurt is other people so why all of a sudden say they were hurting consumers, didnt they realize thats what they were doing from the beginning

emperiox
emperiox

I thought that 77,000,000 PSN accounts were hacked. Wouldn't that be 77 million identity theft charges? How many life sentences is that...? xD HOW did they only get 1 count of a computer crime? Just wondering...

fanboyxbox
fanboyxbox

I hope they get the max in jail time and fines.

rarson
rarson

Anonymous is NOT a group of "hackers". Can we stop saying that they are? They're a bunch of idiots on the internet who do stupid things under the misguided logic that they're actually accomplishing something of value. Anyone with a computer can go onto the internet and proclaim "we are Anonymous" (as if anyone actually cares). The fact that someone with a modicum of hacking skills makes such a claim doesn't mean that the attack had anything to do with Anonymous (which isn't even a group, let alone a hacking group).

ShadowofSonic
ShadowofSonic

Wifi is over-used. I dont even use online on my PS3.