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Security researcher Nick Breese used a PS3 to crack supposedly strong eight-character passwords in a matter of hours.
Typically, previous attempts to crack such passwords took days to get the same result.
Eight-character passwords are used to protect PDF and Zip files as well as those produced by Microsoft Office.
The work to turn the PS3 into a password cracker was carried out by Nick Breese, who works for Auckland-based Security Assessment.
The Cell processor at the heart of the PS3 is the key to speeding up the time it takes to crack a password.
In a presentation given at the Kiwicon security conference in mid-November, Mr Breese said a powerful Intel chip could crank through 10-15 million cycles per second.
The architecture of the Cell processor meant it could speed through 1.4 billion cycles per second.
[ Via BBC News ]
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