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Microsoft Bans One Million Xbox Live Players

Microsoft Corp. has barred a whopping one million gamers from its widely popular Xbox Live gaming service over suspicions that they have altered their gaming consoles to enjoy games illicitly downloaded from various file-sharing sites

According a story released by Information Week, the software maker has taken this stringent move amid the release of its "Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2", the company’s most anticipated game of the year.

Announcing the move, the software giant said in a statement: “All consumers should know that piracy is illegal and that modifying their Xbox 360 console to play pirated discs violates the Xbox Live terms of use, will void their warranty, and result in a ban from Xbox Live”.

Incidentally, Xbox 360 consoles are integrated with Digital Rights Management technologies tailored to detect illicit software, but some of the gamers have reportedly managed to successfully modify their consoles to evade DRM safeguards.

Consoles blocked by the company from Xbox Live will still work if games are played offline, but the banned players won’t be able to login to their accounts, or engage other members of the community over the web.

The Xbox Live gaming service from Microsoft includes as many as 20 million members, according to the company.

Our Comments

Microsoft has all the rights to block those who have hacked their Xbox 360 consoles. However it is likely that there will be hackers to break the DRM protection and the war between Microsoft and the smart guys behind the scene will continue as usual. Still, we've seen quite a few modded Xbox 360 being on sale on Craiglist lately.

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Désiré has been musing and writing about technology during a career spanning four decades. He dabbled in website building and web hosting when DHTML and frames were en vogue and started writing about the impact of technology on society just before the start of the Y2K hysteria at the turn of the last millennium. Following an eight-year stint at where he discovered the joys of global tech-fests, Désiré now heads up TechRadar Pro. Previously he was a freelance technology journalist at Incisive Media, Breakthrough Publishing and Vnunet, and Business Magazine. He also launched and hosted the first Tech Radio Show on Radio Plus.