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Prominent hacker warns Switch hackers that piracy will get you banned fast

While the Nintendo Switch has had its security cracked, nefarious folk hoping to pirate games through it might be out of luck.

Late last month it was announced that the Nintendo Switch had been successfully hacked - and the hack was one which it wouldn't be possible for Nintendo patch out with a system update. That led to fears that piracy of games might soon be running rampant on the Switch - but that won't be the case, at least according to a detailed reddit post from prominent hacker SciresM.

The post, first spotted by Nintendo Insider, details exactly what happens when you connect online and what sort of information is passed to Nintendo. The rub is this: Nintendo has some incredibly strong anti-piracy measures in place that should be able to easily detect pirated games and flag them to Nintendo - and pretty quickly, accounts will be banned.

"These are extremely strong anti-piracy measures - Nintendo did a great job," SciresM writes in their lengthy post, which goes into great detail about how the system gains online authentication to boot games. The hacker then goes on to explain exactly how the detection will work for both physical and digital games were they to be pirated.

"In the gamecard case, Nintendo can detect whether or not the user connecting has data from a Nintendo-authorized gamecard for the correct title. Sharing of certificates should be fairly detectable for Nintendo."

"In the digital game case, Nintendo actually perfectly prevents online piracy here. Tickets cannot be forged, and Nintendo can verify that the device ID in the ticket matches the device ID for the client cert connecting (banning on a mismatch), as well as that the account ID for the ticket matches the Nintendo Account authorizing to log in. Users who pirate games thus cannot connect online without getting an immediate ban."

Basically, if you pirate on Switch, it probably isn't going to end well. Attempts to stay offline might be how some try to answer, but with patches, DLC and online play, this is hardly the DS or 3DS - and that means Nintendo may well have the piracy situation on their little box of wonders thankfully locked down. The battle between pirate and the platform holder continues...

About the Author

Alex Donaldson avatar

Alex Donaldson

Assistant Editor

Alex started out his career in the games media as an over-eager kid working on fan sites, and now has decades of experience. He's the resident expert on esoteric matters like Pokemon Go, hardware, Japanese RPGs and fighting games, and outside of VG247 he's the co-founder of genre-dedicated outlet RPG Site. He also collects original arcade machines, Lego, and considers himself a whiskey buff.

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