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RIAA/MPAA Contractor Deploys Malicious Adware Trojans

michael posted more than 8 years ago | from the gloves-are-OFF dept.

The Internet 883

RichardX writes "Overpeer, the organization responsible for seeding many peer to peer networks with damaged, corrupt and fake files has now found a way of hiding spyware and adware inside Windows Media files by using a DRM loophole and is using this technique to further pollute p2p networks." Several readers sent in a PCworld article on the same subject.

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So how.. (5, Interesting)

kmak (692406) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229529)

exactly are they getting away with this?

Re:So how.. (5, Insightful)

JPriest (547211) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229613)

With tactics like this I hope they don't wonder why people don't feel sorry for them.

Re:So how.. (1)

fprefect (14608) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229721)

Are you saying you did feel for them at one time, when they were the victims? Two wrongs don't make a right, but surely one wrong is still just wrong.

Re:So how.. (5, Insightful)

Fallen_Knight (635373) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229629)

The poeple who should be getting pissed about this is MS, i dont' think they will like it when WMA becomes like IE, known for giving you adware and viruses when used.

Re:So how.. (2)

Three Headed Man (765841) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229687)

Uh... does it run on Linux?

To be serious, I use Linux, and this won't affect me, like IE vulnerabilities don't at all, and like how they didn't even when I had Windows. I used "the Mozillaof audio compression formats" i.e. I copy-infringe only mp3's and ogg's, and I mostly use torrents now, or darknets. WMA is a swearword in all of these locations, because most of the people are also linux users as well.

Re:So how.. (1)

shadowmas (697397) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229731)

exactly i run emule on linux i highly doubt this would effect me. besides i dotn even use WMA.

Re:So how.. (1)

RGTAsheron (844946) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229669)

They have money. And in the USA Judicial system that means they will get away with it. Not to mention they represent a fair portion of the economy so the Republicans won't touch them.

Re:So how.. (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#11229729)

Still butthurt over the election huh? Cause i'm sure this wouldn't be a problem if there wasn't a single republican on the planet right?

I Wonder... (5, Insightful)

jpatters (883) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229531)

Isn't that blatently illegal?

Re:I Wonder... (2, Informative)

tomstdenis (446163) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229554)

Yes, it is. Except to file complaint you have to admit you were trying to download a "pirated audio file".

Of course the alternative is to not pirate WMA files.. mp3 works for me ;-)

Tom

Re:I Wonder... (3, Insightful)

iamzack (830561) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229608)

Yes, but you could circumvent any wrongdoing on your part by downloading a song from an album you already own.

PS: Anyone that ever encodes anything to WMA/WMV is a MORAN anyway. They need to get a brain.

Re:I Wonder... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#11229699)

You mis-spelled moron.

Re:I Wonder... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#11229726)

You don't Fark much, do you?

Re:I Wonder... (4, Interesting)

BrynM (217883) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229611)

Except to file complaint you have to admit you were trying to download a "pirated audio file".
Normally that would be entrapment, but they aren't a law enforcement agency (yet). Thus it doesn't count.

Re:I Wonder... (5, Informative)

Richard_at_work (517087) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229703)

No, entrapment is enticing you into doing something you wouldnt have done without being asked. This is a sting, which the police use frequently to catch drug pushers. Basically the difference is how you received the goods, you have to make the concious decision to download that specific file, rahter than them pushing it at you. Since this file will be in amongst normal files, its a sting. If this was the only file, then it would still be a sting. If they approached you and offered you the file, its entrapment. Since you are requesting the file, its not entrapment. This is why police officers have to wait to be approached to either be sold drugs or to sell drugs (depending on if they are after the pusher or user), they cannot approach the suspect and request it. Same with prostitution, they have to play word games with the prostitute to get her to offer him services without him asking for it.

Re:I Wonder... (1)

DJStealth (103231) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229616)

But in Canada, it is my understanding that P2P is legal, as long as you don't publically "advertise" free music. Can anyone clarify?

Re:I Wonder... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#11229621)

But you forget the fact that people rename all manner of nonsense - in an attempt to get it downloaded and improve their ratios.
Who's in the wrong if I grab a quite legal "hindenburg crash radio report", only to find it's some Britney embedded malware?

Re:I Wonder... (1)

kevlar (13509) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229625)

Not necessarily true. Its virtually impossible to show that someones WMA file is fair use or not simply because it does not have DRM turned on. I've bought WMA online and have also ripped my CDs. Both of which is fair use and perfectly legal. If they happenned to infect my file and claim it to be "pirated", then thats fucking with my property and under todays laws is criminal. Its probably even a violation of the DMCA.

Pirated? (4, Insightful)

Kickasso (210195) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229640)

A copyright holder's agent (RIAA) offered it for download. Perfectly legit I would say.

Re:I Wonder... (1)

System.out.println() (755533) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229718)

Admitting to one pirated audio file is not a big deal. In fact, I don't think they either can or would sue for that, and you can easily tuck all your other pirated files away in some encrypted file somewhere for a period of time. And malware of this sort is a much bigger deal than one (provable) pirated song.

The Golden Rule (1)

CrazyDuke (529195) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229642)

"Isn't that blatently illegal?"

The Golden Rule: He with the gold, makes the rules.

Re:I Wonder... (1)

mastagee (26015) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229683)

"Yes offcifer, I'd like to report a theft. My house was broken into last night and 3 pounds of marijuana were stolen. . ."

Re:I Wonder... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#11229725)

Heh, a buddy of mine had that happen.. Some dipshit kids busted in and took a half pound of pot. He was pissed but there was nothing he could do, even though we pretty much knew who did it (he was selling dime bags of the same stuff the next day at school).

A few months later, the stupid kids came and did it again. This time they took his stereo headunit, cd carousel, and speakers - a fairly pricey mid-high-end Bose setup.

So this time he reported the theft of the stereo. The cops picked up the kid. The kid figures he's really smart, so he pulls out the big bag of weed he stole, and goes "hey look officer, this was in that guys house!".

The cop asks my buddy, who of course says "I've never had marijuana in my house at all."

As far as i know, the kid's still in jail, since posession of more than a couple ounces gets you federal pound-me-in-the-ass prison time in Canada.

Illegal? When large unsuable corps are involved? (5, Interesting)

Chordonblue (585047) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229688)

When is spyware a virus? Don't ask your average anti-virus vendor. When I tried to nail down Sophos on this issue they were evasive - to say the least.

If this trojan is killed by an anti-virus program, is it securing your machine or committing an illegal act? I had this very discussion w/Sophos' techs. I had just cleaned the VX/2 trojan out of a computer - and it took HOURS of work to get it fully out of there. I sent a sample to Sophos and they told me that it was legal adware.

My question was obvious: What methods are allowable for adware, and how is that any different than a virus/trojan.

VX/2 was installed on one of my workstations here through a fault of the OS (unpatched at the time). It installed itself without permission. It left no way to uninstall it. It attempted to shut down Adaware and resisted any attempts to kill it.

So.... THIS ISN'T A VIRUS? Then what the hell is?

And so, overpeer's actions come as no big surprise to me. And I have no doubt that the anti-virus people will continue to turn a blind eye because of their FEAR of a lawsuit.

Damnit, don't we PAY THEM to protect us against this sort of thing?

SCOTT LOCKWOOD SUCKS LOTS OF NIGGER COCK! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#11229532)

*_g_o_a_t_s_e_x_*_g_o_a_t_s_e_x_*_g_o_a_t_s_e_x_*
g_______________________________________________g
o_/_____\_____________\____________/____\_______o
a|_______|_____________\__________|______|______a
t|_______`._____________|_________|_______:_____t
s`________|_____________|________\|_______|_____s
e_\_______|_/_______/__\\\___--___\\_______:____e
x__\______\/____--~~__________~--__|_\_____|____x
*___\______\_-~____________________~-_\____|____*
g____\______\_________.--------.______\|___|____g
o______\_____\______//_________(_(__>__\___|____o
a_______\___.__C____)_________(_(____>__|__/____a
t_______/\_|___C_____)/_SCOTT\_(_____>__|_/_____t
s______/_/\|___C_____)LOCKWOOD__(___>___/__\____s
e_____|___(____C_____)\______/__//__/_/_____\___e
x_____|____\__|_____\\_________//_(__/_______|__x
*____|_\____\____)___`----___--'_____________|__*
g____|__\______________\_______/____________/_|_g
o___|______________/____|_____|__\____________|_o
a___|_____________|____/_LICK__\__\___________|_a
t___|__________/_/____|_THESE!__|__\___________|t
s___|_________/_/______\__/\___/____|__________|s
e__|_________/_/________|____|_______|_________|e
x__|__________|_________|____|_______|_________|x
*_g_o_a_t_s_e_x_*_g_o_a_t_s_e_x_*_g_o_a_t_s_e_x_*


# Please try to keep posts on topic. # Try to reply to other people's comments instead of starting new threads. # Read other people's messages before posting your own to avoid simply duplicating what has already been said. # Use a clear subject that describes what your message is about. # Offtopic, Inflammatory, Inappropriate, Illegal, or Offensive comments might be moderated. (You can read everything, even moderated posts, by adjusting your threshold on the User Preferences Page) # If you want replies to your comments sent to you, consider logging in or creating an account. # Please try to keep posts on topic. # Try to reply to other people's comments instead of starting new threads. # Read other people's messages before posting your own to avoid simply duplicating what has already been said. # Use a clear subject that describes what your message is about. # Offtopic, Inflammatory, Inappropriate, Illegal, or Offensive comments might be moderated. (You can read everything, even moderated posts, by adjusting your threshold on the User Preferences Page) # If you want replies to your comments sent to you, consider logging in or creating an account. # Please try to keep posts on topic. # Try to reply to other people's comments instead of starting new threads. # Read other people's messages before posting your own to avoid simply duplicating what has already been said. # Use a clear subject that describes what your message is about. # Offtopic, Inflammatory, Inappropriate, Illegal, or Offensive comments might be moderated. (You can read everything, even moderated posts, by adjusting your threshold on the User Preferences Page) # If you want replies to your comments sent to you, consider logging in or creating an account. # Please try to keep posts on topic. # Try to reply to other people's comments instead of starting new threads. # Read other people's messages before posting your own to avoid simply duplicating what has already been said. # Use a clear subject that describes what your message is about. # Offtopic, Inflammatory, Inappropriate, Illegal, or Offensive comments might be moderated. (You can read everything, even moderated posts, by adjusting your threshold on the User Preferences Page) # If you want replies to your comments sent to you, consider logging in or creating an account.

Jesushchrist! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#11229578)

Get a fucking life. Doesn't attrition hit the troll community like anywhere else? Or are you all the same old goatse fucks from years ago? Is this really all you do with your time? Get a job! Or go to school! Pretty fucking sad...

Re:Jesushchrist! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#11229601)

Doesn't attrition hit the troll community like anywhere else?

When the troll community gets infested with faggotry like Lockwood then I get angry. Did I ask for your opinion anyways? Go fuck your father.

Re:Jesushchrist! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#11229708)

The amazing thing to me is that you're *still* all the same fucks. Five or six years and you assholes haven't changed anything but handles? You're the same people with the same enemies, the same hangouts, the same bullshit posts. Over and over and over and over. One would think some would come and some would go, leading to *change*. But no. You're the same fucks who clearly don't have jobs or a life. I mean, if you were kids by now you would have finished college, taken jobs, grown up, and maybe had kids of your own. I mean, what the fuck! I'd ask, where do you find the time... but... well... I guess I know *that* answer. Light up another bonghit, buddy... you're gonna need *something* for that 'everyday life' boredom trolls and other slackers must face....

Re:SCOTT LOCKWOOD SUCKS LOTS OF NIGGER COCK! (0, Redundant)

Scott Lockwood (218839) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229631)

Wow - I'm famous! Thanks for the attention Craig!

Re:SCOTT LOCKWOOD SUCKS LOTS OF NIGGER COCK! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#11229639)

GO FUCK YOUR FATHER!

FP (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#11229534)

Fristus Postius, bitches!

This is precisely the kind of thing... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#11229539)

...Michael would do. Have the **AA returned your calls about that job yet, Sims?

Virus?? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#11229542)

The failed buisness model bullying is starting to shoot itself in the foot. Hopefully enough average user will get this and complain loud enough to get the media involved.

Re:Virus?? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#11229612)

Yeah, it sure is a failed business model if there is a demand for your goods, but people are too cheap to pay $15-30 to obtain them legally, and want to get as much as the can without paying for it.

Now if the stuff wasn't in demand, people didn't buy the stuff and people didn't even download the stuff, then there would be a failed business model.

Re:Virus?? (5, Insightful)

eln (21727) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229673)

A failed business model is one that fails to generate a profit. If no one paid for CDs at their current price, but everyone downloaded them, that would not mean people are "too cheap," it just means that the demand for CDs only exists at a lower price point than the supplier is trying to sell them at. If the prices are lowered, sales would increase.

Of course, if there is an easy way to get a product free, people are unlikely to demand it at any price other than free, and so the business will fail unless it can either stop the free distribution of its products, or start selling products that are more difficult to distribute for free.

Under these criteria, the model of selling content that is easily obtainable for free IS destined to fail, whether demand exists or not, since the demand exists at a price point (free) that is by definition unable to generate profits. This is why these organizations are so afraid of filesharing. They can't figure out a way to maintain their current business model, and they haven't figured out a viable alternative business model, in the presence of filesharing.

Re:Virus?? (5, Interesting)

eln (21727) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229618)

I don't know, the MPAA and RIAA have done a pretty good job of convincing the public that pirating music and movies is basically the same as grand theft, and therefore perpetrators deserve everything they get. They have been remarkably devious in their propaganda.

For example: My son watches a lot of Disney Channel, and on that channel there is an animated show called the Proud Family. On this show, about a year or so ago, there was an episode that involved the daughter of the family downloading music. It was 100% blatant propaganda, complete with the corner record store going out of business, and people there losing their jobs, because she downloaded music. It truly made me sick to my stomach that such ridiculous propaganda was being so shamelessly peddled directly to children.

The "average user," and especially the media, is already convinced that p2p is synonymous with illegal activity, so this is unlikely to raise much of an uproar outside of the geek and college student communities.

Re:Virus?? (1)

logicalnoise (749905) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229656)

I personally work under the umbrella of a huge Media conglomerate(wont name it of course). Me and my boss regularly share screeners we get with each other. Either through our own companies means or via the internet. It is a hipocrasy if you look at the mutilation of copyright law over the past two decades.

Re:Virus?? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#11229660)

Huh? Who has done a pretty good job of convincing the public? The music industry? The last time I checked, file sharing was juts as popular as ever.

The music industry has already lost the war. These latest tactics are just desperation.

The music industry gets what it deserves. After decades of screwing artists and music lovers, the industry is facing the facts that their scam is over.

Re:Virus?? (1)

Arcturax (454188) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229684)

Really?

When I was out shopping during the holidays, I got stopped by quite a few people in stores electronics dept asking if anyone knew of a player that would "do DVD-R's". All of them average joes too.

Re:Virus?? (3, Interesting)

neil.pearce (53830) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229689)

Heh, reminds me of the anti-piracy adverts [excellentcontent.com] run by the Federation Against Copyright Theft in UK computer magazines during the 80's.
The one involving the market stall is a particular classic.

Re:Virus?? (1)

Lisandro (799651) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229700)

We need to clarify some things here. First of all, let's not kid ourselves: the vast majority of P2P users download illegal stuff. I have used P2P apps to download legtimate stuff (notably BitTorrent, even when it can be argued if it qualifies as P2P), but i've also downloaded a lot of illegal stuff as well. The reputation is not undeserved.

I don't feel too bad about it, because i end up buying what i really like, be it games, apps, videos or music. Still, i don't justify it.

Aahhhhhhh (5, Funny)

DisasterDoctor (775095) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229544)

High that explains why that Jessica Simpson song I downloaded suddenly made my head explode. :-)

Re:Aahhhhhhh (3, Funny)

avalys (221114) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229558)

No, those songs tend to do that on their own.

Nope: that is a normal reaction (1)

macz (797860) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229594)

This phenomenon happens whether her music is encoded digitally, transmitted over radio spectrum, or observed live.

Going to one of her concerts is like watching those old 50's nuclear tests where they put soldiers in the desert 10 miles away from ground zero just to see what happens.

Re:Nope: that is a normal reaction (1)

goodbadorugly (837673) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229624)

You make it sound too good. I've been to many a rock concert that do just that.

Re:Aahhhhhhh (1)

justkarl (775856) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229607)

So what were you doing downloading/listening/paying attention to Jessica Simpson?

The people deserve to know.

lawsuit? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#11229548)

It seems to me the contractor could be sued for such stuff. Intent of the person downloading is irrelevant.

We need to take advantage of this (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#11229549)

Hack it so that it sends out complaint emails to RIAA and DOSes the RIAA website. Also make it crawl and fill out any RIAA forms on the website. Use random algorithms so they can only statistically cut down on the traffic.

wtf mates? (1)

Aldirn (842942) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229550)

Why aren't the police doing anything about it?

If they can do it... (4, Insightful)

hoggoth (414195) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229551)

If they can do it, so can any hacker/cracker/virus writer. That's a good enough reason to never touch DRM inflicted Microsoft media files.

Re:If they can do it... (2, Insightful)

ArticleI (842868) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229574)

Does anyone actually copy windows media files? I thought everyone used mp3 and if not that, then ogg or flac.

Re:If they can do it... (4, Insightful)

aminorex (141494) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229636)

Law of unintended consequences: .wma/.wmv are dead
as a format. Windows Media Player? Stick a fork
in it, it's done.

Re:If they can do it... (4, Interesting)

BrynM (217883) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229714)

Law of unintended consequences
I think it's ironic that MS originally put these capabilities in so the media companies could provide "richer" and more "interactive" content. The media companies pretty much ignored the capabilities until they found a way to use it as a cludgel. That's like showing someone a car and before realizing they can use it for transportation, they think of it as a battering ram.

I wonder.. (5, Insightful)

slashkitty (21637) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229555)

why people trust wmv files when this can happen. Combine it with some ie security holes and you got a real problem. It'd be pretty easy to create a p2p wmv worm that infects the entire network.. no?

wmf? Probably misguided on their part (5, Insightful)

93,000 (150453) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229562)

It seems anyone the least bit concerned about DRM/sharing/etc wouldn't be using windows media anyway.

Re:wmf? Probably misguided on their part (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#11229614)

I know! When I trade so called "illegal" files on p2p networks, I have .wma files filterd out. Good thing too! DRM is nothing but a disease IMO.

Unbelievable (2, Insightful)

thesatch (844290) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229567)

This should be the last straw to all the fire sharers out there.

People should stop taking such a passive stance to all the criminal acts commited by the MPAA and RIAA. Fight fire with fire.

Re:Unbelievable (2, Insightful)

zoips (576749) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229606)

Fight fire with fire.

Amusing. I thought that was what the RIAA and MPAA was doing.

Re:Unbelievable (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#11229724)

Fight fire with fire...you mean, something like pirating the music and movies that these organizations are trying to protect? Great idea! Here's another one...sign up for any of the online pay-per-song services, buy your music legally, and don't worry about quality or viruses in your downloaded content.
While I don't agree with what the RIAA or MPAA are doing here, there's a small part of me that also feels if you get one of these files, you got what you deserved. When a full CD was the only way to get songs, and the one-hit-wonder bands were taking full advantage of that (charging $17.99 for a CD with one good song on it), I felt file swapping networks were a great idea. Now with the $.88 per song downloads from WalMart.com, I feel there is a way for me to just get the music I want at a very reasonable price.
Suck it up. The internet isn't all about free stuff anymore.

Suprise. (1)

blike (716795) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229568)

Quell surprise.

Re:Suprise. (1)

Bob Cat - NYMPHS (313647) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229615)

Quelle surprise, aussi.

Proof (3, Funny)

BrynM (217883) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229570)

This proves once again that you can't out-evil the major recording industry. Do something bad to them and they will do something worse to you. Only now it's the customers at the shit end of the stick and not just artists. Hell, Satan probably attends seminars on reprisal given by these folks.

Too bad it won't work... (5, Insightful)

justkarl (775856) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229572)

One more reason not to use Windows Media. How many do you need?

Who downloads wmp's? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#11229575)

Serves people right for downloading a Windows media file anyway.

Stay away from WMA files (1, Insightful)

chriso11 (254041) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229577)

Why use WMA files?

How hard is it to simply stick to MP3s? I avoid WMA files like the plague. Even if there is an exploit for MP3s, I doubt it would be effective on all clients.

Re:Stay away from WMA files (2, Interesting)

macz (797860) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229649)

Maybe it was a vector that targets only the clueless? I wonder if these infected files trigger when played by a complete, drop in replacement for M$ Media Player likeMedia Player Classic [sourceforge.net]

I would bet they don't.

Re:Stay away from WMA files (1)

zakezuke (229119) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229706)

How hard is it to simply stick to MP3s? I avoid WMA files like the plague

That would depend whether it's clearly marked .wma or not. I would expect that they would just mark it .mp3 and let windows do the rest.

Get legal and save yourself the trouble... (1, Insightful)

creimer (824291) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229584)

Another reason to avoid the P2P clients for getting music and videos. Get legal and stay out of trouble by avoiding the P2P clients. A weekly virus- and adware-scan also helps.

Re:Get legal and save yourself the trouble... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#11229695)

"Please don't feed the shill" .. Nothing to see here. Keep moving.

Re:Get legal and save yourself the trouble... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#11229720)

Another reason to avoid the P2P clients for getting music and videos. Get legal and stay out of trouble by avoiding the P2P clients. A weekly virus- and adware-scan also helps.

Where I live music sharing is legal whereas vandalism, particularly for profit, is adamantly not.

Aside from that, this doesn't just affect P2P. A WMA file obtained through ANY technology from ANY source may be compromised in this fashion.

If spyware/malware is illegal... (2, Insightful)

phaln (579585) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229585)

...I'd think these people should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. ;)

After all, two wrongs don't make a right, no?

Ah Microsoft (5, Insightful)

riceboy50 (631755) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229590)

Now your DRM can be used a weapon against you, how do you feel about that?

DRM loophole... (2, Informative)

Lisandro (799651) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229591)

It would be pretty funny seeing someone suing the MPAA for infecting their computers. After all, there're laws for that matter.

PS: Stuff like this is why i stick to stream formats like MP3, with no extra bullshit.

Doesn't surpise me one little bit. (5, Interesting)

Naikrovek (667) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229595)

People and companies that see their lucrative source of income starting to dwindle get desperate. Desperate companies (SCO) and organizations (RIAA, MPAA) make drastic moves, and those drastic moves are always overhanded.

record companies employ illegal tactics to enforce their view of the world, expecially when they think they see recognizeable dips in their revenue. Nevermind that they're not actually losing money - the perception of loss is all it takes.

right now they're saying to themselves (as justification for illegal activities) "desperate times call for desperate measures".

These are not desperate times, and those are overly-desperate measures. They're weak, and owned by the music, not the other way 'round.

If it ends in .wma... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#11229599)

...stay away. If it ends in .iso, .mp3, or .bin let it in. Oh, yeah, and don't use Kazaa.

actually, this might be a good thing (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#11229602)

it's certainly not news, but still..

can't wait till some judge's pc is infected this way and he wins a nice multimillion doller settlement

I'm shocked! (1)

AltGrendel (175092) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229603)

Shocked I say.

So when do they buy the CAN-MALWARE Act? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#11229622)

Which, I'm certain, will outlaw all malware except that used to punish people infringing on copyrights.

uhhhhhhhh (1)

logicalnoise (749905) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229627)

does anybody realize that this is a form of spamming?

The problem (4, Insightful)

Dachannien (617929) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229628)

The problem is that the only people with standing to make a legal complaint about this practice (i.e., sue them) are people who have downloaded the files and had damages caused to them from the spyware being installed.

However, at the same time, said people are admitting in court that they downloaded (or attempted to download) media for which they didn't hold the copyright.

One possible way around this is if someone already has purchased the CD/DVD and wanted to download a copy so they could archive the original (because they have CD/DVD hardware that couldn't rip the original to disk). Of course, this idea has not been tested in court, and would probably be a protracted and expensive battle to fight.

Re:The problem (4, Informative)

wolf- (54587) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229664)

Except, that I can create a webpage with the media player embedded in it. An IE user visits, downloads the media automagically and is infected.

You may not have "intended" to infringe on CMAIAA's work, but I forced you to, or rather the browser did.

Re:The problem (4, Interesting)

Nicholas Evans (731773) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229692)

However, at the same time, said people are admitting in court that they downloaded (or attempted to download) media for which they didn't hold the copyright.

Ah yes, but the RIAA is so nicely offering the music for download. They do hold the copyright, don't they? Perfectly legal. =)

This could work with other crimes (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#11229650)

"just deserts for people who illegally trade copyrighted works for free" They could use these philosophy in other crimes -Distribute needles with diseases in order to deter drug use -Land Mines near borders to deter illegal immigrants -Cars that breakdown if they go over 65 and require expensive repairwork to fix I wonder why these ideas havent been thought these before.

Nothing to see here (1)

cybersaga (451046) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229651)

I've never used Windows Media anyways.
I expect my music files to contain only music.

Divx? (1)

Lord_Dweomer (648696) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229654)

Does this affect Divx?

If not, who really cares? I mean...I shouldn't say that....this is probably very illegal, and I hope they get the crap sued out of them (thats one class action I wouldn't mind being a part of), but the reality of "the scene" is that 99.9% of all movie files transferred on the internet are in .avi format encoded with divx, so this will make the company some money from the **AA's, and do practically nothing, like everything else they've done.

Stories like these present the opportunity... (1)

mabu (178417) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229658)

to call attention to Internet sites that don't distribute DRM-enabled music; to artists and bands that offer their work freely online, and other entities that produce great music, video and other artistic content that aren't mercinary about controlling it and the lives of their fans.

Personally, most of the content that people want to restrict rights to sucks so bad, it's no big loss if they clamp down. I keep hoping that the more the record companies try to curtail the distribution of their crappy content, the more attention will be made to indy bands who make much better music and can't get any airplay.

Every time one of these stories runs, there should be a URL Role Call of great sites featuring artists who aren't interested in propping up the obsolete music distribution mafia.

Easy money (1)

nurb432 (527695) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229659)

All we need is a laywer that will take this on as a class-action thing.

Shut these bastards down... Once and for all.

My media player (1)

Kickasso (210195) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229661)

is mplayer and it runs as 'nobody', so nyah. Not that I would ever use Kazaa or anything...

I downloaded that Alicia Keys wma... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#11229662)

...and I got a pop-up ad for a locksmith who also sold Vioxx.

then... (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#11229671)

exactly how does damaging the LEAST format downloaded on the net, affect the overall downloads??

Which versions? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#11229676)

Which versions of Windows Media format are affected?

Just more incentive to download (1)

nurb432 (527695) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229680)

They just raise the anty with stunts like this.

Makes one WANT to download as much as you can..Just out of principle...

Then perhaps send them a cd or two of what you got, as a nice 'thank you' gift.

So if a hacker sets a virus loose, it's bad... (4, Insightful)

Peterus7 (607982) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229682)

But if the MPAA does, it's okay.

However, they do have all right to do this in some respects. They are putting up crap on a P2P network, just like any other idiot. Still, what gets to me is the system in general. When a lone hacker writes a virus, he gets jail time. When a corporation writes a virus...

But then, what should P2P users do? If they're so serious about P2P, they'll either take the risk or find a new way of sharing files that finds the trojans and whatnot.

Although really, I'm suprised the government isn't stepping in right abou... Wait, nevermind.

vigilante justice (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#11229685)

Marc Morgenstern, Loudeye vp and general manager of digital media asset protection, characterized Overpeer's actions as, "just deserts for people who illegally trade copyrighted works for free,"

Mr. Morgenstern's mindset is provincial. p2p networks span international borders. In Canada, downloading music from p2p networks is explicitly legal regardless of its origin. Thus, within Canada Mr. Morgenstern is promoting punishment of people who are not breaking the law, but merely going against his beliefs.

In Canada, those who attempt to punish people who haven't broken the law are called vigilantes and criminals. They go to jail when caught.

next, they sue the user (1)

fmobus (831767) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229693)

assuming the court will accept evidences obtained in illegal manner, of course. That will not stand half an hour.

This is great! (5, Insightful)

AtariDatacenter (31657) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229701)

No, really. It's like peeing in your own pool. You need DRM in order to sell music to people and to "control the rights". But at the same time, they're using DRM to attack people who are outside the system. So it kind of makes you feel unsafe about using DRM in the first place. Life is better outside of the DRM system.

BTW, I remembered the option for something like "automatically download rights management software" when installating Windows Media Player, what, 10 is it now? I hesitantly clicked yes. Now that I've done so, I can't find an option inside of the program to say no. Odd.

Acquire licenses automatically for protected.... (1)

AtariDatacenter (31657) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229719)

Ah. Found it. Under the privacy tab, towards the top. The checkbox is "Acquire licenses automatically for protected content". Uncheck. I'm assuming that'll take care of this attack.

Isn't that a CDMA violation? (1)

jabber01 (225154) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229709)

I say sic the Fed on them, and their employer!

Let's Hope They Burn Themselves (1)

Comatose51 (687974) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229712)

At some point, a virus writer or malicious hacker will redirect traffic to spread virus. Or they'll employ the same method and spread virus via P2P networks. Since most P2P users are accustomed to thinking fake music files come from MPAA, they will blame the MPAA for the damaged computers. Then lawsuits will come up. Whatever the outcome, this will focus media attention on the Draconian tactics of the MPAA and MS's DRM security weakness. Perhaps this will turn even more public opinion against them and put pressure on our lawmakers to do something. Wishful thinking? Probably but there's also a chance...

**AA legislation and you (2, Interesting)

shoptroll (544006) | more than 8 years ago | (#11229717)

Hmmm... Isn't there supposed to be some anti-Spyware/Ad-ware legislation in the works?

If so, how long until that goes MIA?
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