Adobe Photoshop CC Has Already Been Pirated In Just One Day

Adobe Photoshop CC Has Already Been Pirated In Just One Day

With all the recent discussion about Adobe's Creative Cloud model and the polarizing opinions surrounding it, one of the topics people have been mentioning is how it will stop the pirating of Photoshop and other Adobe products in the suite. Some felt that many people were just upset with the model because it could no longer be pirated by those who did not pay. 

Now that Photoshop Creative Cloud went live just the other day, we didn't know what to expect. However, news is out that just a day after the release, Photoshop CC has already been pirated and available. Although we do not condone piracy, we're shocked to see that it was that easy to circumvent the new model. The reason is how CC works, “An Internet connection is required the first time you install and license your desktop apps, but you can use the apps in offline mode with a valid software license. The desktop apps will attempt to validate your software licenses every 30 days.”

With the constant need for validation and continual updates through the cloud, many felt it would be difficult to pirate something that requires constant contact for it to stay updated. However, it took no less than a day for pirates to get around it.

We're not engineers by any means, however you would think that any means of pirating the software would have been cross checked so it would not be possible this time around. Considering Photoshop is one of the most pirated software in the world, is it by design that makes it so hard to stop? We'd like to hear your thoughts.

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Stuart Dallas's picture

If you work out the cost over the average time between major upgrades, the subscription model will generally end up costing more. And it means there's less incentive for Adobe to keep coming out with upgrade-worthy new features.

Ayush Sharma's picture

Wow. Just... wow.

homiesglip's picture

I used to pirate every piece of software that struck my fancy. I would use it, unrestricted and if I didn't like it, I would never use it again. If I did like it, I used the hell out of it and made my reel with it. When I was hired, they asked me what I used on this reel. I told them and they bought everything from hardware to software.

Get it into the hands of young people. If you have a great product, they will use it and when they become professionals, they will demand it. How do you think Adobe has the market share that it has now? I remember in the 90's, all you had to do was put in a serial number off the web.

Christian Stella's picture

I was pretty happy to read some of the anti-piracy comments on here.

I am the cinematographer on a low budget indie movie that has blown up. Even though the film actually looks like a financial success, as it is doing very well on VOD charts, I can tell you that piracy has been absolutely devastating. More people will steal my movie in the next hour than will rent it all week.

We expected piracy, we just didn't expect more than 50 times the people stealing it than renting for $4. I mean, this is where we are now? There's arguments that can take that number way down, but you can't convince me that even just one of those 50 people wanted to see the movie and could have paid. Then we'd have double the customers.

As a filmmaker, I have a movie in top 5 of iTunes in its genre, and we did it without a studio... Just a group of 6 people, unpaid for over 2 years... We have attained our dream, but it has actually depressed me greatly. Our movie was so cheap, so we're guaranteed to make our money back, but with the current attitude toward piracy, I'm realizing that this business is not a viable career option without getting into bed with studios. We're talking very, very small returns here. If I wanted to do a $50,000 movie without a studio, I don't know if we could ever make that back. Honestly I'm confused as to how our numbers can be what they are, and yet beat movies with budgets in the millions and no theatrical release.

The idea that pirates are sticking it to the man... Corporations, studios, whatever... Right now they are sticking it to THIS man, just sitting in his modest rented house with his wife, working on freelance food photography to pay the bills as my "hit" movie has been stolen at least 50,000 times in the past two weeks. I'd convert the pirates to DVD sales though, if we didn't just lose our DVD contract due to the higher than average rate of piracy. (Their words).

Christian Stella's picture

By the by, the movie was edited on a legitimate copy of Production Premium CS5.5 which I added to my Design Standard license. Been a Creative Cloud member since CS6 and love it because I've had to use a little of everything to help promote the movie. Never needed Dreamweaver before but it came in handy. I can understand the frustration from people who only use 2 programs though. It's hard for me to be too judgmental of Adobe because I have two careers that fully rely on their software and I think the price is justified for what I make in my photography and design career... Filmmaking, well you know my thoughts about that.

Dave Williams's picture

But the problem is, when you fall on hard times or simply don't have the money each month for subscription, you're screwed because the software will stop working as soon as you stop subscription. After renting your software for all that time, you will have nothing to show for it. Nothing. Previously you could own what you needed and not have to worry about it since you budgeted for it. Now, that choice is gone.

Also, regarding the marketing of your film and discovering different methods on how to do so, check out "Think Outside The Box Office: The Ultimate Guide to Film Distribution and Marketing For The Digital Era" by Jon Reiss. VERY educational from someone who has actually done it.

Good luck!

PMW's picture

I assume that most of the people on here are designers of some sort, so I would love to know from those who pirate the software how they feel when a client decides not to pay for a design they have created.

raymer's picture

in some countries people do not have access to dollars, or credit cards to pay adobe and they are force to download a crack version of the software!!!...and anyway I think that adobe has not much impact on there earnings am sure more people pay the license to adobe that the one´s don´t pay, but that's not an excuse of course.

Christian Stella's picture

See my post below about how my movie, currently in the top 5 of several genres on iTunes gets pirated at 50 times the rate that people legitimately rent it. A few weeks ago I would have said piracy had a 1:1 ratio at worst and I was horribly wrong. Just one single illegal streaming site is showing that they streamed my movie more than 5 times than it was rented since release. And that's just one of a thousand of these streaming sites, and doesn't include megaupload type sites and torrents. It's absolutely insane to see. The number one referrer to my movie's official website is a piracy site I've never heard of called horrorcinemaflix or something. Now I know why Hollywood is pushing garbage sequels and reboots in 3D... Even small arthouse movies get stolen to death, only they are the ones that no longer have a theatrical model to give them a fair shot before the piracy begins.

Christian Stella's picture

Oh, and I don't mean that to read in an angry tone toward you or anything, I saw that you said it's no excuse, so you're cool.

PMW's picture

No one is forcing you to download the software, it's entirely up to you. There are free alternatives out there and there is no valid excuse for piracy. Maybe consider a career that doesn't require expensive software? Also these people manage to pay for a computer and internet access or is that just because it's harder to steal?

I'm totally on Christian Stella's side on this issue.

Christian Stella's picture

Don't forget that especially for people on this site, piracy of software creates cheap and sub-par competition for companies that don't know the difference.

toni's picture

Microsoft windows, Microsoft office, Adobe Photoshop... all these apps are a monopoly because they are easy to pirate. And Microsoft and Adobe know it.

Adobe with his CC it's nothing about it. It is about the cloud and the dependence or subordination of legal users. You must pay year after year to continue using his products. CC is about dependency not piracy.

Christian Stella's picture

Serious question, for those that refuse to pay for CC due to the subscription model, why not buy a new license to CS6 and steal CC? You're showing Adobe that there is a market for non-subscription and you are essentially paying for CC at the same time. If you think that's a silly idea, maybe you just need to admit that you want the software for free.

Christian Stella's picture

Because for me, I have no problem with people "trading in" a DRM movie for a non-DRM movie. If you paid, you paid.

Dave Williams's picture

How is that going to help anything? IN a year to two you won't be able to open your CC files using CS6. In fact even now there are some features of CC that you can't access in CS6. Much of the whole point of being angry with Adobe is this they are offering subscription ONLY. Let them start selling the perpetual licenses of CS7 and then CS8 and so on and we'll be just fine. It's the removal of CHOICE from Adobe that is annoying.

Paulo's picture

MS and Adobe know there software is pirated a lot and they don't care as much as you think. They both care about the Enterprise. That's where they make there money. Companies like Microsoft need piracy. That's why they never sue individuals for it. The important thing is to get young people to use the software so when they graduate college and get jobs, they convince their employer they need PhotoShop, or Visual Studio instead of the free alternatives. Enterprise business fills MS and Adobe's wallets.

Alan Ralph's picture

(For the record, I'm a Creative Cloud subscriber)

Of course, the flipside of this is that a) since they've evidently adulterated the code to get around the online licencing check, you'd have to wonder what other additions the hackers may have made, b) your Photoshop CC is going to be frozen in time, as it won't get any future updates. Since Adobe *are* updating their software a lot more regularly these days, that could add up to a lot of features you're missing out on, depending on what you're using Photoshop for.

Believe me, there are lots of software packages I would *love* to be able to use (ZBrush, Cinema 4D, etc.) but I've been put off of trying pirated copies for the reasons above. Maybe the youngsters need to be reintroduced to the concept of saving up for stuff.

Dave Williams's picture

And maybe Adobe needs to be reintroduced to the concept that removing CHOICE from the customer is a BAD thing!

Alan Ralph's picture

When you stop to consider the fact that they're still offering CS6 and will continue to support it - plus the fact that other firms like Corel are now offering deals to entice those looking to move from Adobe, not to mention all of the other alternatives that are available - I'd say this is less about choice and more about change. Yes, it sucks that Creative Suite won't be going forward like it used to do, but look at it this way - for some people this might be the impetus they needed to re-examine whether Adobe's workflow is still working for them.

Dave Williams's picture

How long do you think they will continue to support CS6? Through the next operating system for Windows and Mac? For people on CC what happens when they stop their subscription? No matter how you slice, it it is BAD for consumers. In a way you are right, it IS about change - HAVING to change over a workflow that has worked for a LONG time. It's about having to change FROM Adobe to something else when you are satisfied with Adobe software. All because Adobe is greedy forcing their customers to "buy" each upgrade now instead of making a good product with reasons TO buy the next upgrade. People think they're going to have the latest and greatest software all the time? Wait until that bubble is burst as Adobe slowly begins to scale back updates and improvements. Remember, they're out to MAKE MONEY, and once you've got your userbase hooked - ie they can' unscubscribe without loosing access to files - they can cut some of their R&D and give people less and less while THEY continue to make more and more. It's what Adobe does - MAKE MONEY. They are not here for customers, they are here for shareholders.

Alan Ralph's picture

Ok, let's get some things straight here :

1) You won't lose access to your files. They are on your computer, not up in the cloud. The subscription is for the software.
2) Related to the above, my understanding is that the software will become read-only outside of a subscription - ie. you won't be able to edit, only export or print.
3) Adobe have been out to make money from their products for years - I was amongst many who decried the price hikes on upgrades that occurred around the time of CS3, and I help onto CS3 for years because I couldn't justify the cost. Creative Cloud works out a lot cheaper and a lot less painful for me, particularly as I get access to other tools for my work that would have previously required me to stump up for the Master Collection.
4) Far from slowing down improvements, my experience in the last 12 months has been the exact opposite - if you were on Creative Cloud, your Photoshop CS6 got a new & improved 3D system plus a load of other improvements. Illustrator CS6, my other primary tool, has also had additional features added via Creative Cloud. So Adobe are keeping their word on that front.
5) If they did stop improving their products and hiked up prices, believe me they would lose customers fast! Corel have already scented blood and are offering upgrade pricing for Creative Suite users looking to jump ship, and I suspect other firms have similar schemes in the pipeline.

Look, I'm as unhappy as the next guy about the frankly ridiculous price differences that Adobe charge in some part of the world, and I think they could easily drop their prices and still make good profits - but I'm basing my decisions on facts and personal experience, not on rants and gripes.

Dave Williams's picture

Hey Alan, you apparently do NOT understand how this cloud WILL work.

1. Yes, your files are on your harddrive, but how the hell are we supposed to OPEN them when the CC versions begin to seriously diverge from the CS versions? And how are you going to open InDesign files, Premiere files, After Effects files, etc.?

2. Adobe has NOT yet announced what they will do AFTER you stop subscription. You runderstanding is WRONG. When you stop subscription, the software STOPS functioning. Meaning - you cannot OPEN your files with the Adobe software you have on your computer because it will be deactivated.

3. CC may be cheaper for YOU, but for MANY of us it is not. For me, I have Production Premium and I have skipped one or two versions without a problem because I do not NEED the "latest and greatest" software. So this CC will be FAR more expensive for me.

4. Th primary reason Adobe continued to make improvements was because they needed to entice users to buy the upgrades. No enticement, no buy, no money for Adobe. Gee... you've seen great improvement recently. For the last year they've been ENTICING people to upgrade to CC only. Once they've got people HOOKED - meaning that if they choose to unsubscribe several years down the road - they will NOT be able to open their files and will STILL need to rent the software regardless of improvements or not. See item # 2 above. Adobe has removed the NEED for Adobe to make serious improvements. If you think I'm kidding, check out the various blogs and facebook, etc. - they ALL say the same thing.

5. See item #4 above. Once customers are hooked, they NEED to keep subscription just to iopen their software. You MISUNDERSTANDING of how CC works allows you to give Adobe the benefit of the doubt. The reasons WHY people like me are against CC is because it is RENTAL FOREVER.

Try to understand that before you perpetuate false information. You are wrong in your assumptions. Check it out and ASK Adobe these questions. See if you will be able to open your files AFTER you stop subscription. There will be some NEW features in CC Photoshop that will soon not be able to be opened in previous CS versions. It's a fact Alan - verify if you like, but you will find that what I say is true.

Alan Ralph's picture

For the record, I *have* asked Adobe these questions. My previous comments are informed by their responses as well as my experience to date as a Creative Cloud subscriber. With greatest respect, a lot of the blogs and other posting I've seen have been based on supposition.

Regarding the question of whether or not you can open CC version files in earlier versions, this is not new and has been an occupational hazard going back over a decade. The solution is not to rely on your work files as the ONLY copy or your work, retain source material and create archive copies in formats you can open in other software. Not perfect, but it's better to be prepared. This will also protect you against losing access to your software due to OS changes or system failure.

Yes, for some people this may be a more expensive option. I can only speak for my own situation - personally, I'm very happy with Creative Cloud. Your mileage may vary, of course.

Dave Williams's picture

Well Alan, then you either A) did not understand their response, or B) they LIED. Once you stop your subscription your software will NOT WORK. You won't be able to open your files AT ALL. Period. End of story. And that is a FACT.

About opening in older versions, yes you are right. WHICH... is why we are AGAINST this system of subscription only. All that is left is CS6 which will not be updated. And your "solution" to retain source material, etc. is obvious, but MANY formats do not allow you to save in formats that can be opened by other software. Remember, we're NOT just talking about Photoshop here. Can you find software that opens Premiere files? Or InDesign files? Or After Effects files? This isn't just the "little world" of Photoshop.

Yes, it IS more expensive for other people. And ultimate it will be more expensive for you as well. Imagine if Adobe succeeds and other software vendors decide to follow suit. How much can you afford if all or most of your software goes subscription ONLY? $100 a month? $150 a month? This is a VERY dangerous precedent and Adobe needs to fail. If they DO fail, these other software manufacturers will think twice about going subscription ONLY.

I have no problem with CC - I DO have a problem with it being the ONLY choice, meaning NO choice. If they offered CC and perpetual licenses I would not be here and on other forums "picketing" Adobe. They are doing this to force a specific money flow which will ultimately benefit them FAR more than it will us.

So yes, you can only speak for your situation, but MANY of us see the bigger picture and we ALL need to tell Adobe that having ZERO choice is not good and they will fail. If you simply accept their methods you are condoning a dark future for software where corporations will control THAT area as well. It will ALWAYS end bad for the consumer.

Tera baap's picture


TROLLOL's picture

I think what best sums piracy up Is "Christian Rock Hard", go pirate It and you'll see what I mean.

juan pablo barrenechea's picture

Besides in some countries we found nonsense policies that makes the image of Adobe not very lovable:

a) If you live in USA you can buy a version of Photoshop CS 6 for $659 bucks.

b) If you live in Europe (Spain) you have to pay 1.018€ (euros) that in currency in dollars comes up to $1.335 dollars... FOR THE SAME PACK OF BITS! (Amazon prices)

And even more, I can purchase a lot of things from Amazon USA , but when I try to make a purchase of "legal" software from Adobe, just to obtain the same product at half the price...... Oops! Something seems to be wrong with the "color" of my skin/country: A message pops up informing that this software (the very same that the one selling in Europe) can't be delivery to my country...

So what are the consumers policies and ethics from this company to sell his product at twice the price in one continent or other?
Ah ! True , they must pay to the man who deliver the parcel ...swimming through the 4.000 thousands miles of the Atlantic ocean...

UmGood's picture

Um... Good.

Adam Silversmith's picture

The people cracking these programs are smarter then the developers. The price for Photoshop I believe is still too expensive. If they brought the price down I believe more people would just buy it. Then they wouldn't have to worry about it. #Walmart Effect

robert s's picture

I salute the person/s who cracked the software. keep up the great work.
not only will adobe lose more money from going CC and pissing people off, but more will go for the pirated version. greedy azz phucks

I personally use CS4 and I dont understand the need to constantly upgrade year after year.
I would if they had useful features. they need to add gpu utilization pronto. many people have very powerful gpus and its a shame they didnt implement that already.

companies are pushing the limit of chutzpah. microsoft is one of them. adobe now, facebook/instagram.


Alan Ralph's picture

Well, the bad news for you is that CS4 is no longer supported by Adobe, according to - for most products it's now CS5/5.5/6 only.

CS6 does have better GPU support, I can attest to that. And unlike CS5/5.5, support will continue for as long as Adobe can maintain it on Windows and OSX.

robert s's picture

bad news..dont know wth youre talking about. been using CS4 without an issue. What support do I need exactly? dont have any problems. thats not a reason to upgrade. if they put something worthwhile in the newer versions than I would upgrade. as of now, I havent seen something interesting.

"BETTER gpu support" but still not full support. thats the problem. they put out version after version of crap instead of really adding strong features.

screw adobe. I hate everything about them.

Alan Ralph's picture

I'm confused now - on the one hand, you say you're happy with CS4, on the other hand you're blasting Adobe for not adding features you'd like to a version of Photoshop you don't appear to want to pay for.

How about downloading the CS6 trial version, giving it a tyre-kick and seeing if it has improved enough for you?

robert s's picture

dont need too. I see the list of the new "features" they added every new launch. nothing special.till the day they implement GPU utilization, there is no reason for me to upgrade. yes, im happy, CS4 does all I need. half of my work is done with plugins anyway. which do a heck of a better job than PS.

Chris Rogers's picture

pirates gunna pirate. you can't stop em.

Chris Ritter's picture

One really annoying point is that the german version is so much more expensive than the english one. Why is that - it´s basically translated once! So in some way I can understand german customers, who need a german version that they are not willing to pay that much more. But for what photoshop affords the price in U.S. seems pretty justified. - but still many people just who don´t earn money with their pictures just can´t afford it. Still no reason to crack the thing. Maybe gimp and co. should put some pressure on Adobe by improving there products a lot and make it more compatible with the printing industrie

Christopher Cram's picture

Every one knows the subscription based creative cloud (including photoshop) has been out for over a year. Its funny how these articles keep saying it was cracked in 1 day when the same program has been out in the same state for quite some time.

Cowicide's picture

I've been saying this all along while idiots have been telling me over and over that it wouldn't/couldn't be hacked and I was wrong... wrong.. wrong.. and they told me the only people complaining about Creative Cloud's draconian subscription model were pirates.

Surprise. I was right. You can walk right over here and kiss my a$$, naysayers. Kind of funny how all the naysayers always seem to crawl back under their little naysayer rocks every time they get proven wrong. Only to come slithering out later for their next mindless naysaying mission.

Yay, critical thinking skills.

Fumbles's picture

This will just force companies to partially code the programs onto their cloud servers making it mandatory to have internet based subscription to even open the program. Can't crack that...easily any ways.

TonkaTuck's picture

Let's see, the company that currently has the security holes crown created something they thought was secure, but wasn't, and now people are surprised? Yeah, that makes sense.

TonkaTuck's picture

It's amazing how few people can't see the cable television business model when it's right in front of their face. When was the last time your cable company lowered prices? When was the last time you had to deal with your cable company and thought "wow, they have great customer service" when you were done? Once they have you locked in, the price will rise and the user options will dwindle. If you think otherwise, you're incredibly naive.

greekfellows's picture

Anyway, it's always good and it feels good to purchase a legitimate copy of software, since you are using a company's services and you are paying them to acknowledge their work.

One2OneFollow's picture
ck's picture

The creative cloud subscription model is nothing more than a lifetime Adobe tax.
It's about making more money and has zero to do with piracy or anything else.

If they had tried this in the beginning they would have gone out of business in short order.
Anyone who thinks it's cheaper either can't add or is a fool.

Adobe should never have been allowed to buy Macromedia. They immediately became a monopoly king with a stranglehold on the design industry.Same with Autodesk and the 3d industry.It's insane that one company controls all the major high end 3d packages.

If the design industry as a whole refuses to go along and demands that they be allowed to continue buying a standalone license Adobe is finished with this money grab.

As for cs6 that will not be developed any further or updated at all.If you believe that you deserve to pay the thousands more the creative cloud will cost you in the long run.

Garence's picture

Obviously, inept engineers are overpaid.

As with all versions of Windows that have been pirated by teenagers
on weekends & after school, Microsoft and Adobe rush-to-release buggy new products with minimal protections and then wait for feedback from paying customers to inform THEM [!] what they did wrong and exactly where the 'gliches' are.

Dave Pidgeon's picture

All the piracy advocates make me laugh, still trying to make out there's some altruism to what pirates do when the truth is it's just about the money.

Whenever anyone downloads a copy from a cyberlocker, the uploader gets a kick-back thanks to affiliate programs, ads and pay-per-download deals.

Of course they wrap it up in 'freedom' and 'anti censorship' and 'sticking one to the man' but it's one of the great lies of the web and a smokescreen to making money from the work of others

bob's picture

CC isn't just about paying, it is about paying MORE.
Of course it was cracked in a day, Adobe didn't bother to get a decent security team in to make it secure, they just said "cloud, cloud cloud" like every other snake oil salesmen out there. Yawn.

Photoshop stopped getting more useful for me around version 5.5 ... why do i have to be forced to update to a new version EVERY year via a subscription model, when a new version every 2 or 3 years (to deal with hardward changes) would be enough for me. At nearly $1000 per version, it is a big cost for a company. I am hoping that this step might improve the competition. In a world where games are sold for $1.99 .. it is about time Adobe priced its software more reasonably, but lack of competition has stopped that.
Wont be paying for CC... we'll be running an early version of CS for a long time yet.

Tesselator Tess's picture

One of the reasons PS is so popular is because of piracy. "Everybody uses it" from the 14 kids, to stay at home Moms, to my Grandpa. The fact that about half those people pirated the app doesn't matter in the word-of-mouth advertizing from all these folks. Adobe knows this. I don't condone piracy but if Adobe were to make their product pirate-proof (not all that hard to do) chances are "everybody" would use something else and sales to honest people who buy it on word-of-mouth ads and recommendations would plummet.

It's pretty obvious to anyone with a calculator in hand that the new distribution method for CC which is basically a rental system, is all about maximizing profits and has almost nothing to do with anti-piracy measures.

That said, I have looked to see how CC was pirated and the effort individuals need to pirate PS CC has increased two or three fold - so I'm sure this will deter a lot of people from pirating the product.

Clipping Path Image Masking's picture

If the Adobe Photoshop is really pirated, it is very bad news.

Actually, some people are always working on this job. Adobe should guard them to prevent piracy as well as their quality of services.

<a href=" rel="nofollow">glamour retouching</a>

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