Hackers helped Sony kill an exploit that let the PS Portal play PSP games offline

A group of Google cloud vulnerability researchers discovered the exploit in February 2024 and helped Sony patch it in the PlayStation Portal's Version 2.0.6 firmware update.


It seems that the PlayStation Portable - PlayStation's recently released streaming-only handheld device - had a little exploitable window on it where it could be cracked and used to play PlayStation Portable games offline. However, that window has closed due to the work of a group of Google cloud engineers that initially discovered the bug and shared it with Sony. That exploit has now been removed from the device.

The exploit that allowed hackers to play PSP games on the PS Portal was supposedly fixed in the Firmware Version 2.0.6 update that was launched this week. While it doesn’t explicitly say that the PSP exploit was fixed, Google cloud vulnerability researcher Andy Nguyen, who claimed to have discovered the exploit with his team, has said on X that the exploit seems to have been patched out in the update. Nguyen also said that it was his team that “responsibly reported” the exploit to Sony once they discovered and confirmed it.

Andy Nguyen on reporting the PSP exploit on PS Portal to Sony
According to Google cloud vulnerability researcher Andy Nguyen, his team discovered the exploit to play PSP games offline on PS Portal and reported the exploit to Sony.
Source: Andy Nguyen

As might be expected, Nguyen has come under fire from critics who took ire at his team taking the exploit directly to Sony instead of sharing it with the player base. To that, Nguyen claimed it wouldn’t have made much of a difference one way or the other because Sony would have patched it eventually anyways:

Likely true, considering the PlayStation Portal was not necessarily ever intended to operate PSP software. Even so, it was an interesting tweak that is now gone from the Portal, leaving it once more as a device of questionable value that can stream games from your PlayStation 5 as long as you’re on the same network.

Senior News Editor

TJ Denzer is a player and writer with a passion for games that has dominated a lifetime. He found his way to the Shacknews roster in late 2019 and has worked his way to Senior News Editor since. Between news coverage, he also aides notably in livestream projects like the indie game-focused Indie-licious, the Shacknews Stimulus Games, and the Shacknews Dump. You can reach him at tj.denzer@shacknews.com and also find him on Twitter @JohnnyChugs.

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