Point Scam Costs Microsoft $1.2 Million

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Point Scam Costs Microsoft $1.2 Million

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An exploit that allowed hackers to generate new Microsoft Points codes from old ones has cost Microsoft roughly $1.2 million.

Websites offering free Microsoft Points are a dime a dozen and generally best avoided but on March 7 one went online that was, at least in some sense of the word, legit. A group of creative hackers came up with an algorithm that let them use old, existing MS Points codes to generate new ones and they put it online for all to share.

Each refresh of the site brought up a new 160 point code; one person claimed that he scrounged up $150 worth of points in about 20 minutes, but naturally others began having trouble accessing the site as traffic rapidly grew beyond capacity. For those in the know, a stand-alone code generator that could also generate codes for a Halo: Reach Banshee avatar prop or a 48-hour Xbox Live trial was available from various pirate sites.

Microsoft dropped the hammer on the operation fairly quickly but not before roughly $1.2 million worth of MS Points had been cranked out. No word yet on what the company plans to do about it; if it has a way of determining which points are counterfeit it could presumably ban anyone who tries to use them and possibly even track purchases to give the boot to anyone who generated and used the points before it got involved, but whether that's practical or even possible is unclear.

Source: Save and Quit

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Wow, wish I'd known about this uh, I mean, I totally wouldn't do something so awful.

It's actually hilarious when you think about it, it makes you wonder what else is legit among a sea of scams, maybe there's a completely legit "male enhancement" method out there, lol.

Wait for it...
Wait for it...

I predict justifications for theft....

right about...

NOW!

ace_of_something:
Wait for it...
Wait for it...

I predict justifications for theft....

right about...

NOW!

no that only occurs when we are talking about piracy. stealing anything else is TOTALLY WRONG GUYZ! but stealing games is totally justified

This is perfect. They like to try and rip people off for money by using their stupid point system. It would be one thing everything was sold by specific point card denominations, but they sell things at odd point values, so there is always a little left over, or your just a little bit short. It's underhanded. That is probably the only way PSN is superior to XBL. It sucks they got ripped off, but at the same time, I'm not really sorry. I'm not condoning it, but I won't shed a tear for them.

This is also proof of a problem where card numbers are randomly generated and placed on cards. You figure out the system, you get free stuff. USE REAL MONEY MICROSOFT!

Yup that is theft, big theft to in the end. Funny how that goes and it will hurt microsoft [not sure how much] since now either they spend allot of time tracing who used the codes. Or they write it off as a loss.

Actually they don't have a choice they will have to do something else they are shown as weak.

Point Scams.. well any system can be broken.

1.2 million is pocket change for a corporation like that, big whoop.

Baresark:
This is perfect. They like to try and rip people off for money by using their stupid point system. It would be one thing everything was sold by specific point card denominations, but they sell things at odd point values, so there is always a little left over, or your just a little bit short. It's underhanded. That is probably the only way PSN is superior to XBL. It sucks they got ripped off, but at the same time, I'm not really sorry. I'm not condoning it, but I won't shed a tear for them.

I HATE these arguments. Most of the stuff adds up to being the same value and will round off in the long run. (it's either 80, 180, 400, 560, 800, or 1200 values for things) If I want something that costs more than what I have I just buy a 2100 points card and I have points all ready and waiting for my next purchase I'll make within the next few weeks anyway. If penny pinching DLC and Arcade titles is THAT big a deal, then obviously you're not the target audience.

To be honest, if I'd been one of those hackers I probably would have kept the codes for myself, then its an unlimited supply of MS points

So the threads on 4chan were real? But seeing as I'm a Ps3 gamer it doesn't really matter to me, but still, you've got to admire the ingenuity of hackers these days.

1.2 kk, really thatīs it? I mean itīs much money for normal ppl. But we are talking about Microsoft here, they could wipe there ass with 1.2kk and still don't care.

Baresark:
This is perfect. They like to try and rip people off for money by using their stupid point system. It would be one thing everything was sold by specific point card denominations, but they sell things at odd point values, so there is always a little left over, or your just a little bit short. It's underhanded. That is probably the only way PSN is superior to XBL. It sucks they got ripped off, but at the same time, I'm not really sorry. I'm not condoning it, but I won't shed a tear for them.

^This. Can't say I feel sorry for them, they're right bastards for using the point system in the first place. Glad they got a little ripped off themselves.

Gluzzbung:
To be honest, if I'd been one of those hackers I probably would have kept the codes for myself, then its an unlimited supply of MS points

If I still had my Xbox I'd probaly do that too, lol. Or, I would sell them just to friends etc. not give them out on the interwebz.

kebab4you:
1.2 kk, really thatīs it? I mean itīs much money for normal ppl. But we are talking about Microsoft here, they could wipe there ass with 1.2kk and still don't care.

It's still 1.2 million dollars. How is that a justification/reason/excuse/anything? People used a code that cost a company a lot in potential sales. Doesn't matter if it's peanuts for a company. (and it may not seem like it, but 1.2M can still be A LOT even to a company like Microsoft)

OT: Can't they just find out who entered a bunch of 160 points codes in a short period? or find out who didn't buy legit points and rip them out of the account and label them as a cheater?

captcha: whoodi skill

Damn. That's the problem with having an extra step between cash and purchase. More holes to exploit.

danpascooch:
It's actually hilarious when you think about it, it makes you wonder what else is legit among a sea of scams, maybe there's a completely legit "male enhancement" method out there, lol.

image

Deshin:

Baresark:
This is perfect. They like to try and rip people off for money by using their stupid point system. It would be one thing everything was sold by specific point card denominations, but they sell things at odd point values, so there is always a little left over, or your just a little bit short. It's underhanded. That is probably the only way PSN is superior to XBL. It sucks they got ripped off, but at the same time, I'm not really sorry. I'm not condoning it, but I won't shed a tear for them.

I HATE these arguments. Most of the stuff adds up to being the same value and will round off in the long run. (it's either 80, 180, 400, 560, 800, or 1200 values for things) If I want something that costs more than what I have I just buy a 2100 points card and I have points all ready and waiting for my next purchase I'll make within the next few weeks anyway. If penny pinching DLC and Arcade titles is THAT big a deal, then obviously you're not the target audience.

My argument aside. Why do people defend this point system. Explain to me how points are equal or better than just using strait money. My room mate, he needs more MS Points, so he punches in his CC number and buys more. Then they are converted from money to points which he always has some floating around anyway. I want to buy a game on PSN, I put in my CC number and pay the exact amount for it. It's the same thing with Steam.

Also, most isn't all. By your own admission there are things that do not fit into this point system. And what does penny pinching have to do with any of it? I know you are simply seeking to be insulting, but even you can see there are flaws in this system. It's literally completely irresponsible to not worry about money. Not all of us have money that we can just throw at things without worry about where the next check comes from.

They should ban everyone on XBL. IMO

I hope they can track which codes the site created and ban the hell out of the GamerTags (and their associated consoles) who cashed them in. That's just disgusting. Not only did they directly steal $1.2 million from Microsoft, but for all the games and DLC they stole with their ill-gotten points, there is no money for Microsoft to give the devs and publishers for their cut of the download.

Granted, maybe Microsoft will just have to pay them out of pocket. But then that means they actually caused Microsoft to lose more than $1.2 million, or if MS doesn't pay, then they stole from a bunch of devs and publishers too. Way to support the industry, thieving dickheads!

Baresark:
My argument aside. Why do people defend this point system. Explain to me how points are equal or better than just using strait money. My room mate, he needs more MS Points, so he punches in his CC number and buys more. Then they are converted from money to points which he always has some floating around anyway. I want to buy a game on PSN, I put in my CC number and pay the exact amount for it.

Not if you're trying to get a $0.99 avatar or a $1.99 sackboy costume. Then you have to give Sony $5, no matter what. Granted, I will agree that it's great that you can pay the exact amount if your purchase total is over $5, but it's still bullshit that I have to pay $5 if I'm not buying $5 worth of stuff. Save this "wallet" crap for child accounts so that parents can manage how much money they want their kids to have, but for big boys, let us only pay $1.99 if our total is only $1.99.

They've been ripping people off with the point system for years. Can't say I feel sorry for them. Maybe now they'll stop being dicks and just go with a direct money transfer instead of their stupid "theoretical dollars" bullshit.

1.2 million .. so roughly about 30 minutes of their operational costs. If that. Not really going to shed any tears. Just suprised it took this long for someone to figure out the key.

I don't support the actions of the exploiters but I don't see how Microsoft could punish anyone. Whos to say if someone didn't get a dozen cards from different people for a birthday or something and happened to enter them on the same day. They stopped them but I think thats gunna be the end of this.

Knowing Microsoft, they will find a way to track you down and ban you.

Which I actually approve, though I am hoping they switch from Points to actual money so I don't have to buy a card because I needed 100 points even more. I rather have them top the extra bit needed from my online bank account or something.

Sony got that right.

Hold the phone for a second!

There was a way to cheat Microsoft out of free points and some Twat posted it on the Internet???

*Facepalmz*

Captcha="points Aboursha"... lol

The hacker's should be caught, the people who stole the money should be dealt with but Microsoft needs to cut it out with the microsoft points bullshit. That is a fucking scam too.

mjc0961:

Baresark:
My argument aside. Why do people defend this point system. Explain to me how points are equal or better than just using strait money. My room mate, he needs more MS Points, so he punches in his CC number and buys more. Then they are converted from money to points which he always has some floating around anyway. I want to buy a game on PSN, I put in my CC number and pay the exact amount for it.

Not if you're trying to get a $0.99 avatar or a $1.99 sackboy costume. Then you have to give Sony $5, no matter what. Granted, I will agree that it's great that you can pay the exact amount if your purchase total is over $5, but it's still bullshit that I have to pay $5 if I'm not buying $5 worth of stuff. Save this "wallet" crap for child accounts so that parents can manage how much money they want their kids to have, but for big boys, let us only pay $1.99 if our total is only $1.99.

In my ignorance, I was unaware of such things. So I guess it's exactly the same thing as points in that respect. I have never purchased anything for less than $5, so, I digress and concede that PSN and XBL have similar rackets, haha. But, in either case we are still left to buy more than what we need. I guess I just found another reason to keep Steam as a golden example of honest business practices.

Baresark:
My argument aside. Why do people defend this point system. Explain to me how points are equal or better than just using strait money. My room mate, he needs more MS Points, so he punches in his CC number and buys more. Then they are converted from money to points which he always has some floating around anyway. I want to buy a game on PSN, I put in my CC number and pay the exact amount for it. It's the same thing with Steam.

It's better for MS(which they know all too well), as it was long ago proven if you change a value people have a firm grasp of into an abstract they can't quickly connect it will most likely be ignored, and people ignoring monetary value when buying stuff... it's a salesman dream come true.

OT: Oh my 1.2 mil, that's almost worth mentioning.

This...is...HILARIOUS!!!! I think we can all agree that MS needs to start using real money. It works for psn. oh well, still funny though.

Console modding, used game sales, point scams... and still you console peasants can't compete with our piracy. The Master Race leaves you in the dust again...

Uh, double post.

Shit! Triple post!

Baresark:
My argument aside. Why do people defend this point system. Explain to me how points are equal or better than just using strait money. My room mate, he needs more MS Points, so he punches in his CC number and buys more. Then they are converted from money to points which he always has some floating around anyway. I want to buy a game on PSN, I put in my CC number and pay the exact amount for it. It's the same thing with Steam.

Also, most isn't all. By your own admission there are things that do not fit into this point system. And what does penny pinching have to do with any of it? I know you are simply seeking to be insulting, but even you can see there are flaws in this system. It's literally completely irresponsible to not worry about money. Not all of us have money that we can just throw at things without worry about where the next check comes from.

And for people without Credit Cards? It's a top-up service which you can buy over-the-counter. It's logical it'll come in standardised increments and the DLC they put up is reflective of this. Take me for example, I don't "officially" live within a region that Microsoft supports (Malta) so my credit card wouldn't be accepted because it doesn't match my account's nationality. There's a similar issue in place with PS3s and the PSN to while PS3 owners on the island don't get any DLC, I sit back with my silly xbox point system and play Castle Crashers. Which system is flawed again?

(though I agree about Steam getting it right)

EDIT: What I'm saying is region locked consoles which require strict regional accounts and security should not be dictated by CC transactions only when they throw a tizwoz if your account/creditcard/ip don't all match. Shouldn't effectively bar people for emigrating now should we?

Deshin:

Baresark:
snip

And for people without Credit Cards? It's a top-up service which you can buy over-the-counter. It's logical it'll come in standardised increments and the DLC they put up is reflective of this. Take me for example, I don't "officially" live within a region that Microsoft supports (Malta) so my credit card wouldn't be accepted because it doesn't match my account's nationality. There's a similar issue in place with PS3s and the PSN to while PS3 owners on the island don't get any DLC, I sit back with my silly xbox point system and play Castle Crashers. Which system is flawed again?

(though I agree about Steam getting it right)

EDIT: What I'm saying is region locked consoles which require strict regional accounts and security should not be dictated by CC transactions only when they throw a tizwoz if your account/creditcard/ip don't all match. Shouldn't effectively bar people for emigrating now should we?

You can also buy cards at store locations that are redeemable in the PSN store. It's like a gift card. I know the system has it's uses. I just completely disagree with how they run it. It wouldn't be bad if they didn't have things on XBL that cost odd numbers of points. That is really my only gripe with the system. If everything cost some denomination that was either a point card value or was a divisible amount that resulted in not having left over points, that is where the system would not be a ripoff for some things. I did only find out today, thanks to a post here, that you have to buy a minimum amount of $5 worth of account credit, so PSN is no better.

On a happy note, I heard they are making a version of Steam for consoles. Everyone wins there.

Region locking is a hassle. I wanted to buy a gift for my girlfriend who was doing a school semester in London, and what a headache that turned into. In order to not get killed on shipping, I ordered through Amazon.uk only to have a huge headache trying to get the transaction to go through. In regards to what we are talking about, region locking consoles is completely stupid. All it does is prevent people from having access to a systems whole library. Not that everyone speaks every language, but I think you understand what I am saying.

dbmountain:
1.2 million is pocket change for a corporation like that, big whoop.

What does it matter if it's only "pocket change".

I would be pissed off if you stole my pocket change.

We are no longer children nor are we ruled by Freud's 'Id', we cannot expect to be able to take what we want. It's theft and I hope those committing the offence are punished, but I doubt they will see any repercussions.

Maybe I'm a hypocrite and maybe the only reason I am pissed off is because I actually pay for the points and all these people are getting them for free.

But that doesn't change the fact that I'm pissed off.

the free microsoft points sites are usually not scams though, all they do is advertise the get points to sites where you can actually get ms points as i've done many times

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