Microsoft, the makers of the Xbox console, and Sony, the owners of Sony’s PlayStation 4 gaming console, have tried to keep each other at arm’s length by refusing to cooperate with the FBI’s probe into the hacking of Sony Entertainment Network.
Both companies are in the midst of litigation over whether to help the FBI access encrypted data stored on the Xbox’s hard drive.
And while both sides have agreed to provide the FBI with the full contents of their hard drives, neither has publicly acknowledged any cooperation, despite the fact that both companies own some of the world’s most powerful computers and servers.
The FBI is probing the hacking that wiped the hard drives of nearly a third of Sony and Xbox One games and data last month, as well as the data that was recovered from the hard drive of one of Microsoft’s Xbox consoles.
While both companies have refused to cooperate, Microsoft and Sony have been cooperating with the Justice Department, the Wall Street, and the National Security Agency.
In the months since the hack, both companies are fighting to have the case dismissed, arguing that the FBI is using the evidence to attack their businesses.
Microsoft has argued that the investigation is about Microsoft and not about Sony.
“We don’t think it’s a question of whether we cooperated with the government,” a spokesman for the company said.
“It’s a matter of whether the government believes it has evidence that is credible enough to pursue.”
Microsoft has also accused the FBI of trying to use the Xbox as a way to smear the company’s reputation.
“The FBI has a history of using false information to attack companies and to attack Microsoft and the Xbox brand,” the spokesman said.
The spokesman did not respond to questions about the FBI trying to undermine Microsoft’s business, which has benefited from the Xbox and other games that use the console’s capabilities.
The FBI’s efforts to use Microsoft’s name to attack the company have backfired.
Microsoft has spent millions of dollars defending its products, and Microsoft has even donated to a charity that supports victims of the hacks.
And Microsoft and other game companies are now worried that they will be targeted by the FBI if they do not cooperate.
“This is a very dangerous time in the cyber-security industry,” said David L. Boulton, the head of the technology-industry trade group Computer & Telecommunications Industry Association.
“Microsoft’s and Sony’s cooperation with the investigation will be vital for our companies’ future, and it’s vital that Microsoft, which is so successful, cooperate with this investigation.”
But Microsoft is worried about its own reputation.
The company said it will cooperate with whatever the FBI wants to do with its own hard drives.
“As a Microsoft shareholder and owner of many of the hardware we rely on, we want to be able to protect our privacy and security,” a company spokeswoman said.
Microsoft also says it will not be involved in any lawsuits against other companies or individuals who are alleged to have participated in the hack.
“Any company that participates in a legal or investigatory proceeding that is not authorized by law or law enforcement will be held to a higher standard,” the spokeswoman said in an email.