Retro remake consoles are the preferred targets of hackers and their latest victim is Sony’s PlayStation Classic. According to reports, the security of PlayStation Classic is substantially affected by weak cryptography and this is why prominent console hackers including madmonkey1907 and yifanlu managed to exploit the UART serial port to get access to the console code.
Once the console was hijacked, the hackers effectively loaded whatever they wanted to such as third-party software and original PlayStation games.
There are various issues in PlayStation Classic that make it vulnerable to hacking. First off, it has a loosely bundled game list, and the device isn’t properly secure since it hasn’t been designed to connect to the internet. However, this is what makes the console vulnerable to a wide range of possibilities.
Ars Technica reports that looks like Sony haven’t been too to hide the tools required to crack the PlayStation Classic. Hence, the hackers have discovered the process of putting the systems’ code on another device.
Furthermore, the hackers identified that Sony has hidden the decryption key of the most crucial software elements on the console itself. It made it easier for the hacking community to transform the Classic into a platform-free emulator.
Stream in an hour. It’ll just be me laughing for the whole night. pic.twitter.com/nUrYmvCG4E
— Yifan (@yifanlu) December 6, 2018
Yifanlu enabled the device to run Crash Bandicoot through a USB stick because the console doesn’t check which software it is running. Another console hacker on GitHub, Pat Harl, has also managed to create an open-source tool BleemSync that lets anyone crack the Classic at home if you can edit the database and set up the folders and files appropriately.
The console-hacking community also uploaded a Twitch stream of the Classic’s cracking, which showed that the console didn’t perform any particular signature checks even when the sensitive bootrom code is loaded when the console is turned on. Therefore, hacking the Classic is quite easy as any code can be transmitted to the console using a USB device.