PlayStation 5 owners have apparently been getting banned lately for attempting to exploit a loophole involving the new PlayStation Plus Collection. Though those games are only intended for people who actually own a PlayStation 5, people who have access to the collection have been trying to sell their access off to others who might not have the console yet. Sony's apparently taken notice of this and is getting rid of some of the accounts who are found to be taking advantage of this workaround to make a quick profit.
VGC first reported on the apparent banning of these accounts with context from Twitter user zhihuwong who said "Thousands of PSN accounts have been banned." Those accounts in question are largely concentrated in Hong Kong, the user said, but as we've seen from sites like eBay where users can create listings for this sort of transaction, the activity certainly isn't limited to that region.
Thousands of PSN accounts have been banned, and according to community discussions, these accounts are concentrated in HK(@PlayStationHK ), and have in common the receipt of Sony's PS Collection service for PS Plus, which contains serveral PS4 games for free. pic.twitter.com/ECWPRgVuO2— 王之乎 (@zhihuwong) November 26, 2020
A quick search on eBay will show that players are indeed selling off their access to the PlayStation Plus collection, and they're doing so for a low price as well. Games like Fallout 4, Bloodborne, The Last of Us Remastered, and God of War are all included in the deal which makes it a pretty decent purchase for under $10, but it's highly likely now that Sony's got its eyes on the loophole that all those involved in the transaction run the risk of getting banned.
The way this loophole works is by exploiting something people had already discovered about the PlayStation Plus Collection. While it's intended for those on the PlayStation 5, it was found that if you log into a PlayStation 4 after redeeming the offer on a new console, your account will say the games are eligible to be downloaded there. That means that you can play 20 games on the PlayStation 4 for "free" so long as you have a PlayStation Plus subscription and a PlayStation 5, or you at least knew someone with a PlayStation 5 who was kind enough to log onto your console.
That's a convenient way for players to share the games if they want, but selling them is apparently where the line is drawn. As VGC pointed out, it could be that Sony's bans are targeting accounts that log into consoles multiple times throughout different locations in a certain timeframe and aren't actually targeting PlayStation Plus Collection transactions. Logging into one friend's console or another PlayStation 4 within your house to share the games shouldn't be an issue since many players have done that already, but it's likely the rapid logins from users trying to profit off the system that trigger the ban. Sony hasn't officially commented on the matter though, so just to be safe, don't go logging onto a bunch of different consoles to share your PlayStation 5 perks.