Users try out the Sony Playstation 3 at a gaming summit. – AP File Photo

SAN FRANCISCO: Sony on Monday said a US hacker has agreed to stop breaking into PlayStation 3 (PS3) videogame consoles as part of a deal made to drop a lawsuit filed by the Japanese consumer electronics giant.

“It was never my intention to cause any users trouble or to make piracy easier,” hacker George Hotz said in a joint statement released by Sony Computer Entertainment America (SCEA). “I'm happy to have the litigation behind me.”

Sony went to court early this year to stop hackers who figured out how to “jailbreak” PS3 consoles to operate on software other than that originally installed by the firm.

SCEA accused Hotz of violating federal law by posting online information that could be used to circumvent the PS3 security system and allow play of pirated videogames.

A judge granted Sony a restraining order against Hotz, a 23-year-old New Jersey resident, and the case was to be heard in a federal district court in San Francisco.

Sony wanted Hotz taken to task for violations of the US Digital Millennium Copyright Act and a Computer Fraud Abuse Act.

Hotz, who is credited with being the first person to go public with a way to hack into an iPhone, has denied doing anything wrong.

“Sony is glad to put this litigation behind us,” said SCEA general counsel Riley Russell.

“Our motivation for bringing this litigation was to protect our intellectual property and our consumers,” Russell said. “We believe this settlement and the permanent injunction achieve this goal.””We want our consumers to be able to enjoy our devices and products in a safe and fun environment and we want to protect the hard work of the talented engineers, artists, musicians and game designers who make PlayStation games and support the PlayStation Network,” Russell continued.

“We appreciate Mr. Hotz's willingness to address the legal issues involved in this case and work with us to quickly bring this matter to an early resolution.”Hotz was not involved with recent cyber attacks on Sony websites and Internet services, according to the PS3 maker.

Internet vigilante group Anonymous had vowed retribution against Sony for taking legal action against hackers who cracked PS3 defenses to change console operating software.

A message signed by Anonymous at website anonnews.org early this month announced an “Operation Payback” campaign aimed at Sony because of its cases against Hotz and Alexander Egorenkov.

The case against Egorenkov, who also maintains his innocence, is playing out in Germany.

Anonymous argued that PS3 console owners have the right to do what they wish with them, including modifying them.

The hacker group threatened to retaliate against Sony by attacking the company's websites.

Opinion

Editorial

Crime against humanity
Updated 03 Dec 2021

Crime against humanity

The government has yet to fulfil its long-standing pledge to criminalise enforced disappearances.
03 Dec 2021

Revised valuations

THE revised property valuations notified by the FBR for 40 cities for the purpose of collecting federal taxes —...
03 Dec 2021

PWD await rights

ON the International Day of Disabled Persons, it is important to take stock of how far Pakistan has come in ensuring...
02 Dec 2021

Funding for polls

THE PTI government’s autocratic mentality is again on full display, even as it feigns adherence to the law....
02 Dec 2021

Soaring prices

PRICES are surging. And they are increasing at a much faster pace than anticipated, burdening millions of...
Ali Wazir’s bail
Updated 02 Dec 2021

Ali Wazir’s bail

IT has been a long time coming, but MNA and Pashtun Tahaffuz Movement leader Ali Wazir has finally been granted bail...