Friday, November 11, 2005

DRM this, Sony!

DRM this, Sony! -

Marz says...
Here's a nifty little rant on CNET that the Ritalin Kid forwarded to me.
I'm thinking of changing electronics companies...
On Monday, October 31, alert users discovered that Sony BMG is using copy-protected CDs to surreptitiously install its digital rights management technology onto PCs. You don't have to be ripping the CD, either--just playing it from your CD-ROM drive triggers the installation. The software installs itself as a root kit, which is a set of tools commonly used to make certain files and processes undetectable, and they're the favored tool of crackers who are, as Wikipedia puts it, attempting to "maintain access to a system for malicious purposes." In fact, root kits are often classified alongside Trojan horses. And Mark Russinovich, who created a root-kit detection utility and was one of the first to blog about the Sony intrusion, discovered another little gem when he tried to remove the DRM drivers. It broke his computer--disabling his CD drive.

Man , I just love Sony. Those evil bastards. I actually saw this here, here, and here before Marz sent me the other link. The short version is they install this program without telling you. It has no way to remove it. If you do remove it, you end up disabling your CD-Rom drive. As an added bonus it hides any file on your system that starts with $sys$. Which means any aspiring virus writer can hide a virus on your system and it will never be detected.

As you can imagine, a few people are a bit upset. I'm sure Sony will see that this is unacceptable and apologize immediately. Hahahaa. ??Just kidding, I know Sony better than that. Here is what Sony has to say:
Thomas Hesse, President of Sony's Global Digital Business, literally says: "Most people, I think, don't even know what a rootkit is, so why should they care about it?"
Ah, umm, well, how can you argue with that logic?

Well, at least none of those pesky hax0r virus d00dz have taken advantage of the rootkit. Well, ok, maybe they did but since you don't know what a rootkit is why would you care?

So how are things going for Sony? Lets see. Bad publicity is spreading faster than Paris Hilton's legs. All the major anti-virus vendors have classified the software as a virus and added it to their definition files. Oh, and two class action lawsuits. Well, at least they finally decided to stop using it.
"As a precautionary measure, Sony BMG is temporarily suspending the manufacture of CDs containing XCP technology," it said in a statement.

"We also intend to re-examine all aspects of our content protection initiative to be sure that it continues to meet our goals of security and ease of consumer use," Sony BMG added.

Sony BMG said it stands by content protection technology "as an important tool to protect our intellectual property rights and those of our artists."
Gee, they sound like they feel bad don't they?


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