Trojan horse turns Sony PSP handheld console into useless brick, reports Sophos

October 07, 2005 Sophos Press Release

Experts at SophosLabs™, Sophos's global network of virus, spyware and spam analysis centers, have warned users of Sony's Playstation Portable (PSP) to think twice about "modding" their handheld games console after the discovery of the first malicious Trojan horse for the platform.

The Troj/PSPBrick-A Trojan horse, which poses as a hack or "mod" to allow users to run unauthorized and "homebrewed" software, actually deletes essential system files on the PSP and renders it unbootable.

"The good news is that you are extremely unlikely to have your shiny new PSP affected by this Trojan horse unless you're intentionally trying to 'mod' it to run unauthorized software. It isn't a virus, and cannot spread under its own steam," said Graham Cluley, senior technology consultant for Sophos. "However, if you are unfortunate enough to run this Trojan horse you will be turning your new toy into an expensive lump of black plastic."

Users of Sophos anti-virus products were automatically protected against the new Trojan horse.

"Fortunately, the existence of this Trojan horse does not mean that you need to run anti-virus software on your games console," continued Cluley. "Anti-virus protection on your desktop PC should be perfectly capable of detecting the PSPBrick Trojan horse if it is downloaded from the internet, before it is installed on the Sony PSP."

Sophos continues to recommend that users exercise caution about what software they run on their computers, and run the very latest security software.