Game Networks Struggle Back After Holiday Attacks

Microsoft's X-Box service was back online following a Christmas Day denial of service attack from a group known as Lizard Squad. Sony's Playstation Network, however, was still struggling to restore service to customers.
Microsoft’s X-Box service was back online following a Christmas Day denial of service attack from a group known as Lizard Squad. Sony’s Playstation Network, however, was still struggling to restore service to customers.

Online gaming networks including Sony’s Playstation network were the victims of large-scale denial of service attacks that coincided with the Christmas holiday.

As of Saturday, Microsoft’s X-Box gaming network had returned to full operation, while Sony’s Playstation Network was still struggling to restore service, 48 hours after attacks attributed to an online hacktivist group known as The Lizard Squad hobbled the gaming networks on their biggest day of the year: Christmas.

“Update: PS4, PS3, and Vita network services are gradually coming back online – thanks for your patience,” Sony tweeted via its @AskPlayStation Twitter account early Saturday.

The source of the denial of service attacks has not been confirmed. However, the group claiming responsibility for them has claimed that the attacks were more prank than anything else: an effort to irritate Playstation and X-box owners who received a new device on Christmas Day, only to find they couldn’t connect it to the companies’ online networks for Internet gaming.

In recent days, the group also launched an attack on the ToR anonymity network, registering a large number of ToR relay nodes to try to control a majority of active ToR network traffic. The ToR project, which manages the network, said in a statement that it was working to remove the Lizard Squad relays and that “their relays currently make up less than 1% of the Tor network by capacity.”

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