Paris Attackers Could have used PlayStation 4 to Communicate

Paris Attackers Could have used PlayStation 4 to Communicate

While French authorities are on the hunt for those suspected of orchestrating the terrorist attacks in Paris in November, other are trying to piece together how the plans unfolded without the prior knowledge of security officials.

PlayStation has been the gaming console of choice among games around the world, but now officials are afraid it may have been the platform in which the terrorist relayed messages through. In the wake of Friday, November 13, terrorist attacks on Paris, Belgian federal home affairs minister Jan Jambon warned about the growing popularity of Sony’s PlayStation 4 among terror networks, which use the gaming device as a communication channel.

After the nearly simultaneous sieges in Paris, which left at least 129 dead and 352 injured, authorities in nearby Brussels conducted a number of searches for those responsible and discovered evidence that included at least one PS4 console. Jambon believes the Islamic State group, which has since claimed responsibility for the attacks, employed the gaming console to communicate because it is very difficult to monitor.

There are several ways in which ISIS could speak to one another through the console. PS4 users can send messages through the PlayStation Network online gaming service, use voice-chatting or even communicate through a specific game.

PlayStation’s IP-based voice systems are difficult for investigator to monitor compared to traditional forms of communication such as mobile phones and computers.

While it remains unclear whether the militants from the Paris attacks actually used the PS4 to communicate, the popular gaming console has proven to be an effective avenue of covert communication.

UPDATE: The Forbes reporter who originally connected the PlayStation 4 with the Paris attacks, including details of a discovered PS4 at an attacker's apartment, has now admitted he got the story wrong, entirely inventing the discovery of the console. While it is entirely possible the attackers could have used the gaming console, there is currently no evidence linking the PlayStation 4 or Sony networks to the Paris attacks.

About the Author

Sydny Shepard is the Executive Editor of Campus Security & Life Safety.

  • Remembering 9/11 Remembering 9/11

    In this episode, Security Today Editor-in-Chief Ralph C. Jensen Talks with Steve Karoly about security and transportation issues, specifically airport, airline and passenger security. It is the 20th anniversary of the 9/11 terror attacks in New York, the Pentagon and Shanksville, PA. Much has changed concerning security efforts about airport transportation security. The conversation talks about the role that technology plays in protecting the flying public and steps taken to ensure there hasn’t been a successful terrorist attack on a U.S. airliner since 9/11. Checkpoint and screening are evolving at a rapid pace, and the conversation centers on new measures and technologies that are being integrated into checkpoints.

Digital Edition

  • Security Today Magazine - July August 2021

    July August 2021

    Featuring:

    • Tee Up the Security
    • Listen Clearly
    • Turning to the Cloud
    • COVID-19 The Final Push
    • Redefining Security

    View This Issue

  • Environmental Protection
  • Occupational Health & Safety
  • Infrastructure Solutions Group
  • Spaces4Learning
  • Campus Security & Life Safety