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Software Bullet Is Sought to Kill Musical Piracy

<http://www.nytimes.com/2003/05/04/business/04MUSI.html?pagewanted=print&position= >


May 4, 2003

Software Bullet Is Sought to Kill Musical Piracy

By ANDREW ROSS SORKIN

Some of the world's biggest record companies, facing rampant online piracy, are quietly financing the development and testing of software programs that would sabotage the computers and Internet connections of people who download pirated music, according to industry executives.

The record companies are exploring options on new countermeasures, which some experts say have varying degrees of legality, to deter online theft: from attacking personal Internet connections so as to slow or halt downloads of pirated music to overwhelming the distribution networks with potentially malicious programs that masquerade as music files.

The covert campaign, parts of which may never be carried out because they could be illegal under state and federal wiretap laws, is being developed and tested by a cadre of small technology companies, the executives said.

[...]

A more malicious program, dubbed "freeze," locks up a computer system for a certain duration minutes or possibly even hours risking the loss of data that was unsaved if the computer is restarted. It also displays a warning about downloading pirated music. Another program under development, called "silence," scans a computer's hard drive for pirated music files and attempts to delete them. One of the executives briefed on the silence program said that it did not work properly and was being reworked because it was deleting legitimate music files, too.

Other approaches that are being tested include launching an attack on personal Internet connections, often called "interdiction," to prevent a person from using a network while attempting to download pirated music or offer it to others.

[...]


http://www.theregister.co.uk/content/6/30554.html


RIAA attacking our culture, the American Mind

By Andrew Orlowski in San Francisco

Posted: 04/05/2003 at 04:16 GMT

The RIAA's president Cary Sherman is lamenting that there's a lack of civility in the debate over sharing the music we love. He's complaining that people object to his effort to plant bombs in your computer. He says such people are irrational.

The New York Times reveals the record companies are preparing a program called "silent", which "Locks up a computer system for a certain duration - minutes or possibly even hours - risking the loss of data that was unsaved if the computer is restarted," the Times tells us. "It also displays a warning about downloading pirated music."

[...]


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