Sony has fixed the message bug that was bricking PlayStation 4 consoles.
Just a few days ago, we reported that a text message exploit was causing player’s PlayStation 4 consoles to freeze up to the point where a factory reset was required. That’s a huge kick in the teeth since it means you lose all your save data unless you uploaded it to the cloud. On top of that, the crash message didn’t even need to be read to be activated, making it possible to use as a weapon to win multiplayer games.
The message itself contained an unknown character that the PS4 console operating system didn’t recognize. It could be sent to anyone who didn’t have the messaging settings set to private, meaning it could be used to cause opposing player’s consoles to crash. This made a big splash on the PS4 subreddit over the weekend as reports came flooding in from owners forced to reset their consoles thanks to this bug.
However, it seems like the fix is in. Sony has reported that they’ve corrected the bug and the message will no longer cause anyone’s system to crash. They’ve also reported that there is an easier fix for affected consoles that doesn’t involve resorting to a factory reset.
We've since fixed the issue, and it wasn't bricking consoles, just sending them into a crash loop that can be quickly fixed in under 5 minutes. Delete the message on the PS mobile app, go into Safe Mode, use Option 5, console back to normal. ^DB— Ask PlayStation UK (@AskPS_UK) October 15, 2018
On the PlayStation UK Twitter page, a helpful customer service rep gave us the details. First, go into the PlayStation app on your phone or desktop PC and delete the offending text message. Next, boot up your PlayStation 4 into Safe Mode, and then choose Option 5. This will get your PlayStation 4 running good as new.
Curiously, the fix doesn’t appear to be a firmware patch since nothing was downloaded to anybody’s machine. This means that whatever Sony did, it was internal to the PlayStation Network. This might just mean the character that nobody could read was banned or otherwise filtered out of the system.
Unfortunately we don't have any info on this as we are not part of the moderation team. You can however report players by following the steps here: https://t.co/4vU7A35mVU ^MM— Ask PlayStation UK (@AskPS_UK) October 15, 2018
Sony has asked anyone hit with the exploit to report the player that sent it so they can be appropriately punished for being completely awful human beings.