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The current Sony vs. George (Geohot) Hotz saga is really turning into a soap-opera, and now according to PSX-Scene, it shows no sign of letting up. The latest drama revolves around computer hard drives a judge made Hotz hand over to investigators – it now appears the company charged with handling the data want to take clone images of both seized drives.

Not just one copy. TWO!

The issue here is that the original paperwork only gives the third-party, TIG, the right to take possession of the drives "for the purpose of isolating, segregating and/or removing the information on those devices related to Defendant Hotz’s circumvention of the TPMs in the PS3 system." No mention of cloning there!

Unsurprisingly, Geohot’s attorneys have been quick to point the finger.

"SCEA is not entitled to inspect the impounded drives under the impoundment order, nor is it allowed to create and preserve additional copies of the impounded drives, but this is precisely what it seeks to do."

Sony’s response is to ask the judge to order Hotz to comply with TIG’s request.

For the foregoing reasons, SCEA requests that the Court order that Mr. Hotz comply with TIG‟s recommended impoundment protocols and that those protocols be supplemented to ensure that preservation requirements are met as follows:

(1) TIG create and preserve two forensically sound images (e.g., bit stream images) of each impounded storage device in its encrypted form: One to be maintained by TIG in a secure vault for preservation purposes and the second to be used for decryption and/or any other necessary analysis by TIG;

(2) TIG create and preserve two forensically sound images (e.g., bit stream images) of each impounded storage device in its un-encrypted form. One to be maintained by TIG in a secure vault for preservation
purposes and the second to be used for TIG‟s necessary analysis; and

(3) TIG maintain and preserve all of the forensically created images for the duration of the lawsuit.

SCEA further requests that the Court order Mr. Hotz to: (a) provide TIG with the tools and keys necessary to decrypt the impounded storage devices and the keys and passwords necessary to decrypt or unlock any protected files contained on the impounded storage devices;

(b) identify for TIG all virtual machines or hard disks stored or at any time run on the impounded storage devices.3 Furthermore, to verify compliance with the impoundment order, SCEA requests that the Court order Mr. Hotz to provide a declaration setting forth: (i) verification that all storage devices on which any circumvention devices or any information relating to Mr. Hotz‟s circumvention of the technological protection measures in the PS3 System are stored have been delivered to TIG; (ii) why the storage device used by Mr. Hotz in the January 7, 2011 YouTube video entitled “Jailbroken PS3 3.55 with Homebrew” was not delivered to TIG for impoundment; and (iii) the identity of any remote storage of the circumvention devices or any information relating to Mr. Hotz‟s circumvention of the technological protection measures in the PS3 System.4 Finally, SCEA seeks fees and costs in relation to this motion.

Sony originally sued Hotz for releasing the PlayStation 3 jailbreak into the wild, and despite trying to plug the holes ever since, Sony has had little luck in shoring up its gaming system.

Where things will go from here is anybody’s guess, and the only certainty is that this story will run and run. We’ll bring more as and when we get it!

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