PS4 Can Be Crashed With a Malicious Private Message: Report

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PS4 Can Be Crashed With a Malicious Private Message: Report
Highlights
  • Private messages with special characters could crash your PS4
  • Just receiving a notification of such a message is enough in some cases
  • Sony is yet to issue a fix

A number of PS4 owners have taken to Reddit to warn others to set their PS4 messages to friends only or disable them entirely after it was discovered that a private message containing special characters could crash PS4 consoles. It seems that the issue is so severe that it forces users to factory reset their consoles in order to have them working properly. What's more is, you don't even have to open the message to be impacted. Just receiving the notification on your PS4 is enough to trigger a crash in some instances. Sony is yet to respond to this issue. Though it's quite likely that we'll see a PS4 system software update meant to rectify this before its next officially slated update that would bring PSN name changes along with it.

Deleting the offending message from the PlayStation Messages app on Android and iOS may help as long as you're not logged in to PSN on your PS4 at the time. The best way to prevent your PS4 from crashing is to set your messages to private. Here's how you can do that.

How to set PS4 messages to friends only

From your PS4

  • Go to Settings, select Account Management, and then Privacy Settings
  • Choose Personal Info | Messages, select Messages
  • Choose Friends Only or No One and keep it that way until Sony issues a fix

From a web browser on your laptop or PC

  • Visit the PSN Privacy Settings Management page
  • Sign in with your PS4 account details
  • Choose Personal Info | Messages
  • Select the Edit button next to Messages
  • Choose Friends Only or No One and keep it that way until Sony issues a fix

While issues like this have plagued smartphones in the past, this could very well be the first time we see a console's messaging system exploited. Considering the PS4's popularity, this should come as no surprise. With a ton of big games out this year such as Red Dead Redemption 2, Fallout 76, and the recently released Call of Duty: Black Ops 4, you're best served taking these precautions until Sony fixes it.


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Further reading: PS4, PS4 crash, PS4 Private message, Reddit
Rishi Alwani Rishi writes about video games and tech. Legend has it he bleeds pixels. More
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