Meta introduces new anti-piracy measures for Meta Quest 2
- Added statement from Basti564 (translated from German to English).
Meta introduces a new API that performs hardware and application checks, targeting piracy among other things.
The so-called Platform Integrity Attestation API is open to developers who want to protect their VR apps "from unauthorized modifications and potential security breaches".
Meta lists the following use cases on the Oculus Developer Blog:
- Securing device authentication
- Hardware-based app bans
- Protecting financial and enterprise app data
- External data misuse
According to Meta's description, the API generates an encrypted token and verifies its authenticity with an attestation server. If the test fails, the VR application's app server can refuse to launch the application.
The new measure seems to be optional
Exactly what impact the API will have on piracy and widely tolerated software modding is anyone's guess at this point. Could the new measure mean the end of custom songs for the native Beat Saber, for example? We will have to wait and see.
Here's what the well-known Quest tinkerer and firmware sleuth Basti564 has to say about the new API:
"In my opinion, this API is mainly used in combination with anti-cheat systems or to prevent hacking in online games. So not, as many fear, against Beat Saber mods that add new songs, but rather in games like VRChat, which don't approve of mods, or Gorilla Tag, that would benefit from detecting modified clients. However, it is conceivable that Beat Games could, for example, allow access to online leaderboards only with the normal, unmodified game. The system could also be used effectively against piracy of online games. However, most online games on the Quest already have server-side validation of the license to prevent piracy."
Meta is probably most concerned with protecting its own VR ecosystem. Virtual reality is still a niche, and making money from VR applications is a big challenge for many developers. Giving them tools to curb piracy makes Meta's ecosystem more attractive to developers.
The API does not appear to be a system-wide measure. Instead, developers can choose whether or not to implement the Attestation API. There also seems to be an online requirement for the API to work properly, as the checks require a connection to an attestation and app server.