The current PlayStation Network outage started when Sony pulled the plug on the service to thwart hackers who had found a way to steal content using faked credit card numbers, according to a new report.

As detailed on VentureBeat, a poster on called chesh420 has claimed that PSN went down shortly after new custom firmware hit the web.

Called, the mod let users access a developer network where they could enter a fake credit card number and download content at their leisure.

The latest version of went live at the end of March, with guides explaining how to use the credit card exploit appearing a week or so later shortly before the PSN downtime began.

"Now, you can believe Sony's PR team which has kept you completely in the dark, or you can see the list of events above and come to your own conclusion," chesh420 wrote.

Sony hasn't commented on the reasons for the outage beyond blaming an "external intrusion". Earlier today it announced it was "rebuilding" the network to "provide the system with additional security."

The latest update on the PlayStation Blog from corporate communications boss Patrick Seybold reads:

"I know you are waiting for additional information on when PlayStation Network and Qriocity services will be online. Unfortunately, I don't have an update or timeframe to share at this point in time.

"As we previously noted, this is a time intensive process and we're working to get them back online quickly. We'll keep you updated with information as it becomes available. We once again thank you for your patience."

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Fred Dutton

Fred Dutton

US News Editor

Fred Dutton is Eurogamer's US news editor, based in Washington DC.

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