A group of hackers have scammed Microsoft out
of $1.2 million after finding a way to generate new Microsoft Points out of old
Points is the currency for online stores such as the Games for Windows - Live
Marketplace, Zune, Windows Live Gallery and the Xbox
Live Marketplace. There are plenty of sites that provide free Microsoft
Points, but it's rare to find one that is authentic.
March 7, a team of hackers did
some damage to Microsoft's pocket when they developed an
algorithm that allowed them to use old MS Points codes to make new ones. They
then created a website that allowed anyone to do the same just by refreshing
a user refreshed the page, a new 160 point code would be available. Eventually,
a heavy amount of traffic to the site yielded problems, which caused a 404
was able to pull the plug on the site, but still ended up losing $1.2 million
in MS Points. No announcements have been made in regards to what Microsoft
plans to do about this.
The Escapist magazine posed the question
as to whether Microsoft has a way of distinguishing which points are legitimate
and which are counterfeit, so Microsoft could ban those who try to use the hack
versions, but it is unknown whether the consumer electronics and software giant
has these capabilities.