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PlayStation 4 Jailbreak Exploit Discovered, Possibly Applicable to PS5

Modders have never had a better opportunity to jailbreak their PlayStation 4s.
Modders have never had a better opportunity to jailbreak their PlayStation 4s. / Photo courtesy of Sony

A trio of console hackers has successfully jailbroken the PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 4 Pro, and the same exploit may work PlayStation 5s as well.

The jailbreak, known as "pOOBs4," uses a kernel exploit that works on firmware version 9.00 and earlier to allow users to run homebrew apps and unauthorized copies of games. The PlayStation scene hackers SpecterDev, ChendoChap and Znullptr claim credit for the jailbreak, with special thanks to Sleirsgoevey for a webkit browser exploit they discovered and TheFloW for discovering the filesystem bug that makes the jailbreak possible.

Using the jailbreak requires internet access and a USB key carrying a special file. Once that file runs on the PlayStation, the console can then receive data from a PC.

Although the PS4 has been jailbroken in the past, it was only ever accomplished on older versions of the console's firmware, which severely limited the number of games that would be playable on it. Sony only just released its latest update, 9.03, on Dec. 1, which means a huge number of players who have yet to update from 9.00 can make use of this hack.

This jailbreak is also significant for its potential application to the PS5, allowing for a jailbreak unusually early in the console's life cycle. The exploit has yet to be tested because the lead developer on the hacking team doesn't yet have a PS5.