The holidays are usually a time for family, fun, and relaxation, and some use the opportunity to plop down on their couches or most comfy chairs to get a decent amount of gaming done. Sadly, many of those very eager gamers have been met only with heartbreak as both PlayStation Network and Xbox Live services went down for the count on Christmas day. And while Sony and Microsoft have yet to formally acknowledge the causes, a group of hackers was only too happy to take credit for it.
A hitherto group called Lizard Squad basically claimed on Twitter that they are responsible for the outages and are practically holding the services hostage. They aren’t asking for money though, only that the world retweet their messages before they put the services back online. That is, of course, if the two tech giants don’t put them back online first.
As of this writing, both services are still down, though Xbox Live seems to fare a bit better, or at least are giving a bit more information. While PSN is simply marked as “offline”, several Xbox services are already noted to be up and running, including purchasing content, multimedia, and the website itself. Core services for the Xbox One and Xbox 360 are still limited unfortunately.
It is a tad ironic that this DDoS (Distributed Denial of Service) attack comes at a moment when both companies have actually said they are hardening their services and preparing for the worst, but mostly due to the fact that the infamous The Interview is going to be available for digital downloads. It is still unknown what really caused these outages, as Lizard Squad continues to claim responsibility while Microsoft and Sony remain silent.
Needless to say, the Lizard Squad is now very unpopular among the gaming community, a community that is usually characterized as being very vocal and energetic.