PS4 Messages Designed to Brick Your Console Reported By Users

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If you've received a malicious message with three heart emojis followed by a question mark box symbol, chances are your PS4 has frozen up and either needed a factory reset or a database rebuild to correct it. Reports began to circulate on Reddit about the console-breaking bug, which apparently comes in the form of an unintelligible message that's appearing in the inboxes of some PS4s.

It looks like the PS4 is a now a victim of a bug that will cause it to crash hard when it receives messages containing a string of specific characters.

In order to protect your hardware from this kind of attack, users are encouraged to change their message settings to receive messages from "friends only" or "no one" under Personal Info/Messages, according to Polygon. As a result, this is being used as an exploit in multiplayer games, where players use a dummy account to send the message to opponents, in turn crashing their console and getting them kicked from the match. Sony's PS4 Messaging app is free to download and offered for both iOS and Android devices. Messaging, and set Messages to either Friends (if you trust them) or No One.

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It does seem that the exploit is purely text-based, so changing your PlayStation messenger privacy settings should prevent it from happening. Sony does warn that the procedure could take a long time depending on the type and number of data items on the console.

As noted, the user uses the term "bricks", incorrectly.

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