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Report: Sony Granted Right To Subpoena Hotz' Web Provider In PS3 Jailbreaking Case

Report: Sony Granted Right To Subpoena Hotz' Web Provider In PS3 Jailbreaking Case

March 7, 2011 | By Mike Rose

March 7, 2011 | By Mike Rose
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Sony has been granted the right to subpoena George 'Geohot' Hotz’s website, allowing the company to unmask the IP addresses of every visitor to his site from January 2009 to the present, according to media reports.

Technology news site Wired is reporting that federal magistrate Joseph Spero has allowed Sony to subpoena Hotz's web provider Bluehost, requiring the provider to hand over "documents reproducing all server logs, IP address logs, account information, account access records and application or registration forms" for Hotz's site.

The subpoena also states that Bluehost must pass along "any other identifying information corresponding to persons or computers who have accessed or downloaded files hosted using your service and associated."

Sony has also won the right to subpoena YouTube, Google and Twitter, allowing the company to retrieve data regarding Hotz's accounts on each service.

Sony told the magistrate that it required the information to prove that Hotz had indeed distributed the hack, and also to prove that the hack was downloaded in Northern California, hence allowing Sony to sue Hotz in San Francisco.

In a letter to the magistrate, Corynne McSherry, a staff attorney with the Electronic Frontier Foundation, said that "these subpoenas, the information they seek, is inappropriate," also calling the ruling "overly broad".

Apart from the subpoena on Hotz's website, Sony has also been granted the right to see the IP addresses of all those users who either watched or commented on his YouTube videos, and details of all those who contacted him via Twitter.

A hearing regarding whether Hotz will be tried in San Francisco or New Jersey is set for next month.

A U.S. District Court granted Sony a temporary restraining order against Hotz back in January, after it was found that the company was "likely to suffer irreparable harm" due to the hacker's actions.


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