If you were planning to spend a good amount of time gaming on your PlayStation or Xbox gaming consoles this Christmas, be warned. A group of hackers who only recently launched cyber attacks against Tumblr, have threatened to attack both Xbox Live and Sony’s PSN (PlayStation Network) on Christmas day and take them both down, Forbes reports.
The group that has issued the latest threat is called the R.I.U. Star Patrol. One day before their scheduled attack against PSN and Xbox live, the group launched an attack on the servers of popular gaming company EA, which caused its servers to crash.
The group has been constantly issuing threats using its official Twitter handle and termed the recent attack on EA a “pre Christmas test.” It even mockingly “thanked” EA for participating in the test.
The group also gave an interview to a popular YouTube-based gaming news channel called 7421Max where they reiterated their intention to go ahead with the attack.
The same group, earlier this week, claimed to take down popular blogging platform Tumblr in a Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attack that led to Tumblr being down for several hours.
When asked if the attacks are part of any agenda, the group responded by saying that there are no ulterior motives except “just having a little bit of fun.”
We have risen from the ashes of lizardsquad and we’re here to end all services gaming related. https://t.co/B4r8V5HAPY
— R.I.U. Star Patrol (@StarPatrolling) December 24, 2016
If the group does go ahead with their plans on Sunday, this would mean chaos for millions of people who would attempt to login to their consoles on Christmas Day.
The period is usually known for a large number of online game activations and purchases. Currently, many are hopeful that both Microsoft and Sony have taken enough precautions and necessary steps to overcome the threat posed by the group. However, looking at the hacking instances from the past few years, it seems, these companies would not be able to do anything significant to prevent these attacks.
FIRST ATTACK OF CHRISTMAS EVE: @StarPatrolling are currently hitting EA with a DDos attack say its a “pre-christmas test”
— Holiday DDos News (@HolidayDDOSNews) December 24, 2016
Meanwhile, just two days before the attacks, there was an attempt to take down the Twitter handle of the group. The group had tweeted that the account was “seized” for investigation. However, they went on to add that the attacks will happen nevertheless.
A few hours ago, the twitter handle sent out an ominous warning saying that they have risen from the ashes of the LizardSquad and that they will end all gaming related services on Christmas day.
It seems to have become a tradition of sorts to bring down popular gaming networks on Christmas or New Year’s Eve. The trend seems to have started back in 2014 after both the PlayStation Network and Xbox Live were taken down on Christmas Eve by a group known as the Lizard Squad.
The very next year, a similar thing happened when another group called the Phantom Squad first took down Xbox Live followed by PSN just a day later. Following these attacks, both Sony and Microsoft struggled to bring the services back to normalcy. Full functionality was only restored after the busiest part of the year was over.
In case you are planning to spend time with your gaming consoles this Christmas Eve, we suggest doing all related online updates and registration processes today, one day in advance, so that you are not stuck on or after the attacks are launched.