The Nintendo Switch has been hacked, opening it up to pirate software and online cheats.
As Digital Foundry reports, two similar hardware-based exploits that use a bug in the system’s Nvidia Tegra X1 processor have been revealed by veteran console hackers fail0verflow.
Because the exploits are hardware-based, Nintendo and chip maker Nvidia are both unable to patch them out.
Right now, that means that a full, touch-enabled version of Linux with 3D acceleration support is now available for the Switch, and that homebrew code execution is possible.
In the near future, Nintendo will likely do battle with pirates via system updates, hoping to make it as difficult as possible to cheat its popular hybrid.
However, as Digital Foundry notes, “The reality is that any software-level fix from Nintendo can be undone if hackers put in the time and effort to roll back changes Nintendo introduces to the OS… Nintendo faces a security nightmare in preventing piracy and keeping modders and cheats out of its online gaming environment.”
The exploits were fully disclosed to Google, Nintendo and Nvidia some time ago, and fail0verflow said it is wary of highlighting them.
"That said, the Tegra bootrom bug is so obvious that multiple people have independently discovered it by now," the group said.
"At best, a release by other homebrew teams is inevitable, while at worst, a certain piracy modchip team might make the first move,”