"Five Layers of" UWP DRM Cracked
Subject: General Tech | February 18, 2018 - 04:26 PM | Scott Michaud
Tagged: DRM, pc gaming, uwp, arxan
TorrentFreak is reporting that the software piracy group, CODEX, has broken the MSStore, UWP, EAppX, XBLive, and Arxan copy protection mechanisms protecting Zoo Tycoon Ultimate Animal Collection. Because this is the first and currently only case of an Arxan-protected title being cracked, TorrentFreak is cautious to claim that the copy protection is broken, just in case there’s a flaw in this specific title that allowed circumvention.
Image Credit: LadyOfHats via Wikipedia (Public Domain license)
That said, piracy groups are smart engineers, and DRM essentially amounts to saying, “I’m giving you all the pieces required to unlock this content, but I’m doing it in a way that you hopefully won’t figure out”. At least with most encryption, there are some components (keys and passwords) that are never public, and they are required to unlock the content. DRM doesn’t have that option, because otherwise no-one would be able to use the content it “protects”. (Then there’s also the whole “what are you spending and what are you hoping to gain by using DRM” argument that is often overlooked, because exerting control often correlates with a decline in sales, but that’s another discussion.)
Regardless, CODEX claims that this is the first time a UWP titles has been successfully pirated. It took about four months after its release, but it eventually happened.