Thursday, November 10, 2005

Priceless Quote of the Year

As some of you may have seen, Sony is in a little bit of trouble. It started with Mark's Sysinternals Blog reporting that if you try to play certain Sony music CDs on your computer, the CD installs a rootkit. Oh, and to boot, if you discover and try to uninstall it, you're left with a dead PC. From the Register article:
A 'root kit' generally refers to the nefarious malware used by hackers to gain control of a system. A root kit has several characteristics: it finds its way onto systems uninvited; endeavors to remain undetected; and then may either intercept system library routines and reroute them to its own routines, or replace system executables with its own, or both - all with the intention of gaining system level ownership of the computer.

What makes Sony's CD digital media software particularly nasty is that using expert tools for removing the parasite risks leaving you with a Windows PC that's useless, and that requires a full reformat and reinstall.

So a rootkit is very, very, very bad. Evil hacker type of stuff. But this quote is priceless (I've seen it quoted several places, but have not listened to the audio myself...I should just to be safe): "Most people, I think, do not even know what a Rootkit is, so why should they care about it?" That's from the head of Sony BMG's Global Digital Business. Yes, because if you don't know what something is, then it can't hurt you, right? Unbelievable. Oh, and apparently, Sony is still being uncooperative about letting users get a patch.

As I said before, Sony's in a bit of trouble with several lawsuits getting filed. I hope they get their asses nailed to the wall for this ridiculous nonsense. I would say, take the amount that Sony claims to be losing because of piracy (even though that number can be debated), then quadruple it for violating criminal hacking statutes.

Update: The first trojan horse to take advantage of Sony's screw-up has been found. So let me reiterate the main point of all of this. Sony, being overzealous about piracy (the damage of which many people believe to be overstated), is directly responsible for exposing people's computers to security holes. I would love to see an agressive attorney general (Eliot Spitzer, maybe) send a nice billion dollar class action suit Sony's way. The costs lost to piracy will pale in comparison. If you're worried about whether or not this affects you for a CD you've bought, check here. They have a list of CDs, as well as some pictures of what to look for here (note the little "Content Protected" logo).


At 5:03 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...


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