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Possible Hack Of Sony, Microsoft Game Console Sites

Attendees walking past the Sony PlayStation booth at the Game Developers Conference in San Francisco in 2012. The PlayStation and Microsoft's Xbox consoles were experiencing a possible hack on their online sites.

If you can't get your new Sony PlayStation or Microsoft Xbox online today, you can blame the Lizard Squad – or (indirectly) North Korea. Or maybe neither.

The Lizard Squad purports to be a group of hackers now claiming responsibility for a denial of service attack on the two game consoles' online sites.

"We are aware that some users are experiencing difficulty logging into the PSN," a Sony PlayStation service alert said on its online site, according to Reuters. "We will update this article with any changes that occur in regards to this issue. Thank you for your patience."

Reuters said Microsoft's site said three Xbox platforms were affected by a similar service problem: Xbox One, Xbox 360 and Xbox on other devices.

In a series of tweets, a group calling itself Lizard Squad took credit and promised to restore service if it was re-tweeted enough times.

The Washington Post says: "Both companies acknowledged the difficulties experienced by users on what is presumably a heavy day for online gaming by recipients of new game consoles. But it was difficult to determine how widespread the outages were. Microsoft declined to comment on the scope of the problem and whether it was the result of a hack. E-mails sent to numerous Sony officials were not answered."

And Reuters notes: "The problems may have been exacerbated by Sony's decision to let consumers download the controversial movie The Interview through Xbox Video as well as other online sources."

PCWorld, writing of the presumed hack, said Lizard Squad was "saddled with a heart three sizes too small and living up in a cave above Whoville."

Update at 11:55 a.m. ET: Microsoft Back Up, Sony Still Down

Reuters reports: "Microsoft Corp's Xbox Live was back up on Friday while Sony Corp's PlayStation Network remained offline for a second day after a hacker group claimed responsibility for attacking the two Internet gaming services."

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