**UPDATED 11/15/2010 - Check this page and page 5** Just wanted to make a quick post to hopefully answer a number of questions people seem to have about security and getting banned, how it works, how to stay safe, etc.. Difference between a RETAIL game and a BACKUP (burned copy): Retail discs include a security layer that a DVD burner cannot reproduce. When making a copy of the retail disc that security info can be read and stored but cannot be rewritten on the backup the same way it existed on the original retail disc. That is why you must have a modified firmware (flashed xbox) that will be able to read/respond to that security information even if it is not stored in the same way as an original retail disc. This is what SSv1 and SSv2 refer to, the way the backup stores the security info to be read by the flashed xbox drive. AP25 and YOU: First off, FIFA 09 is not an AP25 title. Currently the only AP25 titles are Fable 3, Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood, and Need for Speed Hot Pursuit. What is AP25? Anti-Piracy 2.5 Simply put, its an updated security layer on both the disc and in the game files. There is a lot of confusion on how AP25 actually works, many people just make something up or attempt to make it sound far more technical (scarier) than it really is. Like the security system outlined above AP25 should work in the same way but with an added check. When you attempt to boot the game AP25 kicks in and asks the DVD drive to check some things on another security layer. If you have a backup of an AP25 title in the drive this check will fail because those security layers do not exist on the backup. Because AP25 is new, the current LT firmware does not have the ability to fake a response or look somewhere else for this security info if you are trying to play a backup copy. If you have the original retail disc in the drive the AP25 check will pass because the drive is able to location the security layer and return the proper response. When LT+ is released it should support this new security feature and be able to answer future AP25 checks without the retail disc. This is being referred to as SSv3 (our new fake security layer for backups). **Ok, so without LT+ if I want to play an AP25 game like Fable 3 I need the retail disc?: Yes. What about the Nov. 1 Dash update? (Kinect Dash): Dash update is safe. The only reason an old dashboard will not fail an AP25 check and the new dashboard will is old dashboards do not support the new security feature. Basically before the dashboard update on Nov.1 the 360 didn't look for AP25 because it didn't know it was supposed to. The new dashboard now has that support built in. Other than that, its just a dashboard update. Why do people say Samsung and Hitachi drives are safe? Is my LiteOn/BenQ not safe?: Some drives may be physically unable to read this new security layer (AP25 layer) and thus are considered "safe" from the new AP25 checks. LiteOn and BenQ drives are able to read this information and when asked by an AP25 title they will. So, can I replace my 360's drive with a Samsung to be safe? No. A drive is locked to the 360 it shipped with and cannot be swapped out. There is a method known as "spoofing"(copying some of the drive info to make the xbox think its the original) that will allow another drive to work. This is NOT a safe way to avoid AP25 checks. Even though the drive works, when an AP25 title asks for the check to be performed, your xbox will still "think" it has the original drive, so if it was a LiteOn or BenQ before then it will attempt to check even if it can't. If the check doesn't pass then your xbox will fail. What happens if I fail an AP25 check?: If you happen to fail and AP25 check for any reason your xbox will record this failure and your console will report back to MS that this check has failed. Currently it is believed Microsoft is collecting data for another ban wave using this information. Being flagged doesn't guarantee a ban, but MS is aware that your xbox did not pass. I've also heard AP25 could be added to older games with a title update?! Is this true?: Yes and No. AP25 checks could only be added if the original disc had an AP25 security layer to begin with. **If I fail an AP25 check will it prevent me from playing other backups? No. When an AP25 title fails the test it does in fact return an unreadable/dirty disc error. Essentially, it is looking for something that cannot be found on the disc so the error comes back as unreadable/dirty disc. This is ONLY for the failed AP25 title and will ONLY happen on the backup. If you failed an AP25 check with say a Fable III backup, you can play with the retail disc just fine because when it looks for the AP25 information it will find it. Failing the AP25 check will not prevent other non-AP25 titles from playing nor will it prevent you from playing legit retail copies of the AP25 title even after failure. There is no corruption or dirty MS tricks involved with this, the backup disc you are attempting to play (AP25 title) really is unreadable since the AP25 data isn't there. **Will the upcoming LT+ software fix my AP25 failure flag? No. When LT+ is available and flashed on the console, even after a failed AP25 check, your backup AP25 title should then become readable as the drive can now look elsewhere for that stored AP25 response information. I do not expect the flag to be removed after flashing with LT+ due to the fact you can currently pass the AP25 check using a retail disc but the flag will remain if you failed the check prior. Think of the Xval(secdata) like the Windows Event Log. When an error occurs it records the error in the log for the Admin (in this case Microsoft / XBLive) to look at. What MS chooses to do with that information is still up in the air. **As Jester pointed out in this thread, you can also write protect the NAND to prevent the xbox from being able to log security events such as failing the AP25 check. It will not bypass the check but if you were to fail the check it would not record the failure for future reporting to MS next time you are online. A guide for this will be added soon however it is recommended, unless you feel safe soldering things to the xbox motherboard, that you stick to double-checking your iso's before tossing the disc into the drive. If you xbox is already banned this may be of use to you as well. If there are other general questions I missed please post them and I will attempt to answer them. If any of the above info is incorrect and you have proof to support that I will be happy to edit this "FAQ" with the new information. Posting that you read somewhere or giving me a link to another forum is not proof but the reason I wrote this. Too much information is made up or misinterpreted causing more scare and panic than necessary. There are always going to be security improvements made, AP25 is just one of them. I only know how the system works on a basic level. I do not have any information on how AP25 request/reponse data is generated. It could be a general system (all games store the same values, the check just serves and a secondary check to the original check) as the ones before it or it could be a game-by-game basis (individual games have their own AP25 values). Do NOT post responses based only on what you have heard. If you have direct or personal knowledge on how these security systems work, feel free.