Lizard Squad takes credit for taking down Sony and Xbox

As promised on Christmas, hackers targeted the Sony PlayStation Network and Xbox Live, causing gamers headaches.

The Lizard Squad reportedly has taken credit for dropping Microsoft’s Xbox Live and Sony’s PlayStation Network on Christmas Eve and Christmas day. It’s not a complete surprise to hear of the cyberattacks, with the group promising them all month long. Lizard Squad used a distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attack, with the FBI and other hacker groups reportedly targeting them.

Unfortunately, the group demanded 10,000 retweets of a message posted on Twitter, so gamers will be able to access Xbox.com, Xbox Live and other services – and regain playability on PSN.

It’s not a surprise they wanted to target the attack for Christmas day, as many gamers plug in their consoles for the first time – or hit the power switch to begin playing a new title.

XBOX LIVE ON ITS FEET AGAIN

Xbox Live is online again after suffering an outage, with a hacker group claiming to have DDoSed its servers.

Their alleged antics left many in the United States and Canada unable to connect to the service at all, while others reported that only their friends lists were affected.

Thankfully, it appears the service is now back up, with the Xbox Live status page reporting no problems!

The group Lizard Squad took credit for the outage on Twitter, and is threatening that there is more to come and will do it again over Christmas. Unfortunately some people are just like that. The group also claimed to be behind PSN’s issues back in August.

Hacker group claims responsibility for taking Xbox offline

Xbox owners are reporting difficulties connecting to Xbox Live and a hacker group with a history of targeting online gaming services is claiming responsibility for taking the network offline.

Xbox 360 and Xbox One owners have reported that they’ve been unable to connect to Xbox Live. Consoles are responding with the 80151909 error code — it warns that an Xbox Live profile has failed to download — when users attempt to sign in. My own attempt to sign in to Xbox Live from consoles and through Xbox.com have been unsuccessful too. 😦

Microsoft’s Xbox support site doesn’t indicate their are any current issues with Xbox Live services or apps.

The hacker group Lizard Squad indicated on Twitter that it is responsible for taking Xbox Live offline. The group, which describes itself as “kings” of distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks, tweeted that it was preparing for a larger attack at Christmas on Xbox Live and that today was a “small dose of what’s to come.”

Earlier this year, the group claimed responsibility for a similar attack on Sony’s PlayStation Network, as well as denial-of-service attacks on individual online games like Grand Theft Auto 5, League of Legends, Destiny and more.

Xbox Live Gold members get vikings, piñatas and more free

Xbox Live Gold subscribers will be treated to three free games next month, starting with the Xbox One debut of the indie title Volgarr the Viking, Microsoft announced today.

Xbox One-owning Gold members will be able to get Crazy Viking Studios’ brutally difficult action game free from Nov. 1-30. Volgarr the Viking launched on Windows PC via Steam in September 2013. Non-Gold subscribers will be able to buy the Xbox One version for $9.99.

Microsoft noted that Volgarr the Viking is the free Xbox One game for November in certain regions only, including the U.K. and North America. Customers in Australia, Brazil, Germany, Japan, Korea, New Zealand, Russia and Taiwan will instead receive the full version of the Xbox One launch title Powerstar Golf.

Xbox Live Gold subscribers on Xbox 360 will be able to download two well-regarded games for free in November: Rare’s Viva Piñata: Trouble in Paradise (screenshot above), the 2008 sequel to the original Viva Piñata, and Volition’s Red Faction: Guerrilla, the destruction-tastic open-world shooter from 2009. Trouble in Paradise (regularly $14.99) will be available free from Nov. 1-15, and Red Faction: Guerrilla (reg. $19.99) will take its place from Nov. 16-30.