The Nintendo Switch just got hacked, and it's nigh unpatchable

Nintendo's worst nightmare

The Nintendo Switch just got hacked, and it's nigh unpatchable

It finally happened—the Nintendo Switch has been hacked to run Linux, and now, even games and homebrew apps. According to a report from Eurogamer, two unique flaws in the hardware allowed hackers to exploit the console, meaning there’s no easy way for Nintendo to patch the security issue. The problem lies in the Switch’s boot ROM, and the only way to fix it would be to update the processor.

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Hacker fail0verflow demonstrated the exploit in a video on Youtube yesterday, showing a Switch running Linux with full touchscreen support, as well as 3D acceleration. Apparently the hackers had known about the issue for some time, and had disclosed it to Google, Nvidia, and Nintendo. After the disclosure agreement deadline had passed, hackers fail0verflow and Kate Temik brought the exploit public to make it clear that they were tinkering with the hack purely for homebrew experiments.

However, that does leave the Switch wide open for people to pirate Switch games moving forward. Nintendo will be able to release security patches on the software level, but they will be continuously playing catch-up with pirates as hackers are likely to quickly find ways around these security updates. We’re excited to see what will be coming out of the homebrew scene, but at the same time, tough times could be ahead for Nintendo.