The Saga Of The Hacked PS3 Root Key Continues

by Matt Helgeson on Jan 27, 2011 at 02:28 PM

While the world was focused on the announcement of the company's NGP handheld, some interesting new developments occurred in the company's ongoing battle with hackers.

Tekgoblin reports that Sony won a temporary restraining order against hacker George (Geohot) Hotz, the man who reportedly leaked the root key to the PlayStation 3 onto the Internet, effectively opening up the console to homebrew hackers and software pirates. Some had even been using the root key to unlock ill-gotten trophies in certain PS3 titles.

According to documents obtained by PSX-Scene (actual links to the pdf files are here), Hotz is barred from:

“offering to the public, creating, posting online, marketing, advertising, promoting, installing, distributing, providing, or otherwise trafficking” in any software or methods for circumventing the PS3′s protection methods. No longer can he “provide links from any website to any other website” relating to such matters, or publish any information obtained by hacking the PS3. And more to the point, he can no longer “engage in acts of circumvention of TPMS in the PS3 System to access, obtain, remove, or traffic in copyrighted works.”

In addition, Sony released a new PS3 firmware update (3.56) today that was characterized by Sony's PlayStation blog as a "minor update that adds a security patch." We can only assume part of this patch was intended to prevent people from jailbreaking the PS3 with the root key. However,'s Matt Furtado reports that hackers have already managed to circumvent this new update and are releasing new root keys that allow people to continue to jailbreak and run homebrew applications on the PS3. The report gives no specifics.

This has become quite a soap opera, and it appears Sony is learning one of the cold, hard facts of life: It's really hard to put the toothpaste back in the tube.