PlayStation Network and Xbox Live were both offline on Christmas Day following DDoS attacks by hackers known as Lizard Squad. Many gamers will be able to use their consoles normally today, though, thanks to a surprise intervention.

In a strange twist, Mega co-founder Kim Dotcom claims that he was responsible for stopping Lizard Squad. He said that he offered the hackers lifetime Premium membership for his file-sharing site in exchange for halting the attacks. Lizard Squad apparently confirmed the deal on Twitter:
Premium members at Mega have much higher storage and bandwidth limits than free members. Dotcom says that these benefits will only be available to Lizard Squad as long as they never attack the console networks again:
The Xbox Live Status Page confirms that the service is now back to normal. The only problems reported with Xbox Live now are with the IGN, MLB and Maxim apps. Those apps' issues may be unrelated to yesterday's attack, though.

PlayStation gamers aren't as lucky. PSN is still offline according to the latest update on their status site.

"We are aware that some users are experiencing difficulty logging into the PSN. We will update this article with any changes that occur in regards to this issue. Thank you for your patience," Sony says.

The latest tweet from the PlayStation Support account doesn't offer any helpful details on the downtime:
Lizard Squad was previously responsible for taking down games like Destiny and Hearthstone among others. They hit PSN back in August as well. Lizard Squad promised the Christmas attack about a month in advance.

However, the group said late last night that they've halted their attack. This means that PSN should return to normal soon:
I hope that Lizard Squad honors their deal with Kim Dotcom. Still, it's sad that this is what it takes for these attacks to subside. I'd rather Microsoft and Sony find a way to actually protect their networks. Dotcom's freebies may have stopped Lizard Squad from continuing its attack but what's to stop another group from doing the same? If anything, it's going to encourage copycats now that there's a chance they'll be rewarded for their vandalism.

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