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Cyber Sleuths vs. Secret Networks

michael posted about 11 years ago | from the call-your-ten,-and-raise-you-ten-more dept.

The Internet 640

amnfinch writes "I saw this article on BBC news and frankly, I was blown away. Just another example of the relentless campaign to treat file swappers as criminals when their 'crime' is murky at best." Sir Haxalot provides an article on the flip-side: "CNN has a story on 'exclusive' Peer to Peer networks, that require 'knowing the right people and having a wealth of content on your hard disk to get into the clique.'"

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Bluffing? (1, Interesting)

Sir Haxalot (693401) | about 11 years ago | (#6564122)

Do the RIAA really think they can do anything to these networks? Or are they just trying to 'act tough'?

Re:Bluffing? (5, Interesting)

Lazar Dobrescu (601397) | about 11 years ago | (#6564331)

The RIAA are indeed 'acting tough'. Their tactic is simple: Scare people away from P2P. Once it is clear that P2P is illegal, and that people are either going to jail or get fined big bucks for it, they assume that most 'ordinary' people will stop downloading files from P2P networks.

Of course, that might or might not happen, as we know the public to be easily scared and all. On the other hand, it is very possible that it will not work, like things do not work for, say, marijuana. Of course, the penalties the RIAA wants to impose on file-sharers are orders of magnitude worst than the penalty for simple possession of marijuana, but it is my opinion that these penalties will not hold for long once they start applying it to too many people.

As for the smaller, encrypted P2P networks, I don't think the RIAA is after them for now, as they don't really cause them that much trouble. Just as music-sharing before the era of P2P, a P2P network of 30 people does not make as much noise as one of millions of users, and arguably, in the eyes of the RIAA at least, not as many missed sales.

In the end, the first people who get caught in RIAA scare tactics and decide to fight back(there shouldn't be too many of them) will be the ones who will decide of big P2P network's future. If they manage to win their case, or even bring the penalty to something affordable and acceptable for a 'normal' person, there will no longer be any way for the RIAA to scare people. On the other hand, if they end up having to pay 1000$ a month or worse for the rest of their lives, you can expect that a lot of users will shy away from the network, making them less and less efficient...

I FAIL IT (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 11 years ago | (#6564123)

first post for real slashdotters (no GNAA sheot)!!!! w00t!

Who knows what evil lurks in the hearts of men? (0, Troll)

ackthpt (218170) | about 11 years ago | (#6564183)

Who knows whatevil lurks in the hearts of men?

Do you? I sure as heck don't, maybe John Ashcroft does, or someone at the RIAA, geez. Sure seems to be a lot of it about, huh?

Oh, wait! A clue! [bloodyfingermail.com]

Re:Who knows what evil lurks in the hearts of men? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 11 years ago | (#6564304)

what does this post have to do with anything? and from a subscriber, sheesh!

Poopoo butter (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 11 years ago | (#6564127)

If jizzwhistle is a word, I think it would be good for describing michael sims.

Thanks. This topic is very interesting. Linux, SCO and RIAA.

FIRST
FAILURE!

Mommy says... (-1)

magsymp (562489) | about 11 years ago | (#6564131)

that swapping is bad, but daddy seems to like it; I saw him kissing the neighbor last night.

Quoting a P2P "cyber sleuth": (4, Insightful)

James A. A. Joyce (681634) | about 11 years ago | (#6564141)

From the BBC story [bbc.co.uk] :


"Mark Ishikawa, a former hacker, is the CEO of BayTSP, arguably one of the most recognised and biggest companies working in the business of patrolling the web to unmask violators of copyrighted music.

From his Silicon Valley base he told BBC News Online: "There is no lock that can't be picked and our technology ensures that there is not a rock in the world you can hide under if you are sharing files.""


It's not about whether or not there's a lock to pick, nor how strong it is; it's about the fact that there's about 30 million locks which have to be picked at any one time.
That's why clamping down on P2P is going to be so hard. It's not because of the difficult of catching people - after all, most of the make virtually no effort to cover their tracks even when using centralised services - but the fact that there are simply so many of them. It's like trying to delete every single byte of data on a hard disk - it's not very easy to do at all without completely destroying the disk itself.

It's a deterent (3, Insightful)

binaryDigit (557647) | about 11 years ago | (#6564203)

It's not about whether or not there's a lock to pick, nor how strong it is; it's about the fact that there's about 30 million locks which have to be picked at any one time.

The RIAA doesn't want to prosecute everyone who shares files, they want more people to stop sharing files. The idea is that if for everyone they do go after 10 (or whatever) other people will stop.

You may well be correct. (4, Funny)

James A. A. Joyce (681634) | about 11 years ago | (#6564315)

The thing is, though people may well be deterred, I think they will probably continue to use P2P after short time anyway when they see geeks carrying on like nothing's happened.

Joe Sixpack: Wow! I can download ten songs a day for free!
Joe Sixpack's friend: Cool! So am I!

One week later

Joe Sixpack: I got a letter from the record companies. They tracked me down, so I think I'll stop.
Joe Sixpack's friend: Wow, guess I'd better stop too.

They stop. One week later, Joe Sixpack and Joe Sixpack's friend see a Geek using a P2P service

Joe Sixpack: Dude, I thought the record companies sued you if you shared files.
Geek: Only a few people. They're just trying to scare everyone else straight.
Joe Sixpack: Really?

One week later

Joe Sixpack: Wow! I'm downloading more songs than ever before, and the record companies really haven't busted me!
Joe Sixpack's friend: Me too!

They all live happily ever after, except for the media giants which have to switch to a proper business model. The end.

Re:Quoting a P2P "cyber sleuth": (2, Interesting)

gl4ss (559668) | about 11 years ago | (#6564267)

yes and besides, his argument loses quite a much point, like, they're saying they are these uberhaxors who can go ANYWHERE, and do go ANYWHERE they like(which is of course, pretty much illegal, and impossible). what they're saying is that if i trade cdr's with my local biker gang(with 'files', he even implies that they are controlling anything that offers files, that means, they're bigger than google!) or if i copy mp3's with my neighbour through direct cable they still will find me! this guy sounds a bit like the phantom ceo at that penny arcade strip.

**"We find between 1.5 million to two million copyright infringements a day and we have a very high effectiveness rate. About 85% of the people we send notices to go away and we never see them again."**

so, but they aren't sending 1.5 million to two million notices per day aren't they? i call that they're ultimately ineffective in handling the problem.

what they're in fact doing is biting into the money veins of riaa, by bullshitting them and by bullshitting everyone in the progress as well, i wonder if i should file a suit because they spy on my private gallery(that shares files, that they have no right to access to, yet they imply that they magically are doing this, i think i could argue that i'm clueless about such things and they made me lose my sleep and i became insane because of that and ran out of tinfoil).

Re:Quoting a P2P "cyber sleuth": (0)

dukarukus (68326) | about 11 years ago | (#6564287)

"but the fact that there are simply so many of them" - that's a good point.

the tactic will probably work against most people though. think of those movie situations where it's 10 vs 1 and none of the 10 advance because at least one of them will bite the bullet.

it's similar to me and will have most people not using p2p simply because they could be the one to pay the fine...

Re:Quoting a P2P "cyber sleuth": (1)

foregather (578505) | about 11 years ago | (#6564305)

If locks are so useless against the determined, why do the same companies that pay these crawlers spend so much money on DRM?
--

Re:Quoting a P2P "cyber sleuth": (0)

James A. A. Joyce (681634) | about 11 years ago | (#6564347)

So that when the determined break said useless locks, the same companies can then turn round with the evidence of the broken locks and say "We need more copyright laws! We need to stop these evil hackers!"

What a crock... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 11 years ago | (#6564142)

"There is no lock that can't be picked and our technology ensures that there is not a rock in the world you can hide under if you are sharing files.

I call BULLSHIT!

meanwhile... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 11 years ago | (#6564251)

at drunken college party, RIAA employee flips over super technology card and yells, "DRINK MOTHERFUCKER!"

Yeah, but... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 11 years ago | (#6564145)

Does it run Linux?

I can't believe it... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 11 years ago | (#6564146)

I had one of my posts deleted today.

Bye all, it was fun.

Awwwww, cheer up! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 11 years ago | (#6564264)

Here's a funny geek joke for you:

Q: Why do programmers confuse Labor Day with Kwanza?

A: Because you're a stupid anal rententive geek!

How about this one? (0)

magsymp (562489) | about 11 years ago | (#6564345)

Q: What's black and blue and doesn't want to f*ck?

A: The five year old boy in my trunk!!!!

hahahah.

uhhh (4, Insightful)

nomadic (141991) | about 11 years ago | (#6564159)

when their 'crime' is murky at best.

Actually, it's pretty clear. Distributing copyrighted material without the copyright holder's permission is illegal. Nothing murky about it. The sense that I seem to get from slashdot is people really, really want to share files, so they tell themselves there's nothing wrong with it.

Re:uhhh (4, Insightful)

ryants (310088) | about 11 years ago | (#6564207)

Distributing copyrighted material without the copyright holder's permission is
illegal.
... so they tell themselves there's nothing
wrong with it.
Legal and illegal != right and wrong.

Re:uhhh (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 11 years ago | (#6564224)

Actually, the "crime" isn't so clear.

In many countries, copyright infringement is against the law (and therefore illegal) but isn't a criminal matter (and therefore not a crime).

Definitions matter a lot, especially in law.

Re:uhhh (1)

westyvw (653833) | about 11 years ago | (#6564253)

And there is nothing wrong with it. Copyright is out of control, out of the consumers best intrest and therefore should be ignored. Ben Franklin didnt like copyright laws and neither do I. The person making the music, movie or whatever, is done. THey have made the piece, now its ours and thats that.

Re:uhhh (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 11 years ago | (#6564275)

And there is nothing wrong with it. Copyright is out of control, out of the consumers best intrest and therefore should be ignored.

I hope you never run into anyone who feels the same way about your car, or your life.

Re:uhhh (2, Interesting)

aborchers (471342) | about 11 years ago | (#6564354)

The person making the music, movie or whatever, is done. THey have made the piece, now its ours and thats that.


What do you do for a living?

I'm serious. I want to know what you do that you expect to profit from to the degree that you can keep comfortably yammering away at this anti-copyright mantra.

Re:uhhh (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 11 years ago | (#6564310)

Copyright infringement is not a crime unless it's for profit. Otherwise it's just a tort.

Copyright law (2, Interesting)

ka9dgx (72702) | about 11 years ago | (#6564319)

IANAL - I don't need anyones permission to excercise my fair use rights. In fact, it's not a right if I have to ask permission, is it?

It's not at all clear that sharing a file with a friend is illegal, and it's clearly not immoral.

Copyright exists to provide incentives to push works into the public domain, not to keep them out of it.

--Mike--

Re:uhhh (-1, Informative)

cavemanf16 (303184) | about 11 years ago | (#6564333)

uhhh... Bzzzzztt!! WRONG!

Although IANAL, my wife is currently at school (a top tier school with a cyber-law class she just took this spring) and you sir, are most decidedly WRONG!

There is no case precedence for calling peer-to-peer digital file sharing "illegal" as all of the big-name newspapers (owned by the media companies of course) are calling it these days. There is such a thing as fair use, and fair use does allow sharing of legally purchased music, movies, etc., which most if not all of the mp3's and divx's online are, copies of the originally purchased movie, music, etc. The destruction of Napster did not create any such precedence to say sharing files between me and you is illegal, merely that they can't be offered up for free from a central server, i.e. Napster, because that is OVERSTRETCHING the provisions of the fair use clause in copyright laws. There is a huge difference between overstretching the provisions of a law and outright illegality.

You have been duped into believing just what the big media companies want you to believe to increase their profits.

Re:uhhh (5, Insightful)

JaredOfEuropa (526365) | about 11 years ago | (#6564336)

True, but maybe he meant 'crime' as opposed to 'misdemeanor'. Swapping songs is wrong, but the punishment should fit the crime. Sharing a few songs does not warrant being served with multi-million dollar lawsuits, being treated worse than a drunk driver, or being bullied into handing over your live savings to the RIAA. It's the RIAA's tactics and the way file swappers are treated, that has people up in arms, not the fact that they're going after the swappers in itself.

The RIAA is clearly trying a scare tactic, by making examples out of a few individuals. It's a bit like the old days, when they would cut off the hands of shoplifters (though not quite as bad). Respectable people like you and me may shrug about that, but just you wait until you are singled out for being made into an example... and you don't have to have committed any actual crime; if the RIAA dislikes what you do, you're a viable target. Look at that student with the search engine.

Re:uhhh (1)

flez (463418) | about 11 years ago | (#6564367)

Sure, distributing copyrighted material is illegal, but filesharing on it's own isn't (and may even be murky).

"murky at best"? (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 11 years ago | (#6564160)

Obviously, you have never produced any significant intellectual property.

Thieves are thieves, my friend, not matter what their excuse.

Notification...with extreme prejudice (1)

mikeophile (647318) | about 11 years ago | (#6564167)

"We find between 1.5 million to two million copyright infringements a day and we have a very high effectiveness rate. About 85% of the people we send notices to go away and we never see them again."

Re:Notification...with extreme prejudice (1)

tkg (455770) | about 11 years ago | (#6564309)

I wonder how many of those originate in the US. The article doesn't say if bayTSP's authority extends beyond the borders of the US.

newsgroups and the IRC (2, Informative)

DrLudicrous (607375) | about 11 years ago | (#6564171)

What about newsgroups? I hear about people trading very large amounts of data via newsgroups all the time, including entire CD's. It seems to be more reliable than peer-to-peer, and it's private. And what about the IRC? I've heard of people getting software shipped to them before it's even released to the general public because of good contacts on IRC channels!

Re:newsgroups and the IRC (1)

garcia (6573) | about 11 years ago | (#6564206)

what about IRC? There are now PUBLIC web spiders that search IRC networks for bots that are carrying Warez (music, movies, etc).

You search em, they tell you what server, channel, and bot to hit up for your stuff.

Newsgroups are a pain in the ass to get anything from. UUDECODE and other formats are used and generally the files are split over MANY messsages.

Re:newsgroups and the IRC (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 11 years ago | (#6564235)

Newsgroups are a pain in the ass to get anything from. UUDECODE and other formats are used and generally the files are split over MANY messsages.

At least on Usenet some 14 year old punk can't cut off your download like Krapzaa.

For movies, I prefer Usenet exclusively.

Re:newsgroups and the IRC (1)

garcia (6573) | about 11 years ago | (#6564300)

you're insane. That's too much work.

I get 200kB/s+ on BitTorrent downloads. Much faster and easier.

Re:newsgroups and the IRC (2, Informative)

aridhol (112307) | about 11 years ago | (#6564259)

Newsgroups are a pain in the ass to get anything from. UUDECODE and other formats are used and generally the files are split over MANY messsages.
There are tools [shemes.com] available to simplify downloading from newsgroups.

Re:newsgroups and the IRC (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 11 years ago | (#6564217)

He is only talking about automated trading. And the article does mention newsgroups you may actually want to read it. (I know this is /. but we can all live in hope)

Re:newsgroups and the IRC (2, Informative)

aridhol (112307) | about 11 years ago | (#6564230)

From the BBC article:
This involves launching robotic searches across the internet, on all major peer-to-peer networks, in 65,000 newsgroups, FTP sites, Internet Relay chat channels and auction and retail sites.
Newsgroups are extremely non-private. You put the files on your ISP's server, which broadcasts to (almost) every other ISP in the world.

Re:newsgroups and the IRC (1)

rpresser (610529) | about 11 years ago | (#6564329)

Anonymity is far more easily achieved on Usenet than in other P2P situations.

Re:newsgroups and the IRC (2, Informative)

binaryDigit (557647) | about 11 years ago | (#6564249)

What about newsgroups?

The security of newsgroups depends entirely on whose news server you're using. If the nntp server you're accessing records your ip along with your requests, then you can be tracked in the same way as they're using for p2p. Ditto IRC, though usually with IRC, someone will setup a temp ftp site and tell interested parties what the ip address and username/password is to access the site.

Re:newsgroups and the IRC (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 11 years ago | (#6564278)

The security of newsgroups depends entirely on whose news server you're using. If the nntp server you're accessing records your ip along with your requests

I would almost certainly say that the IP detectives are only concerned with Usenet uploaders. Trying to nail downloaders from Usenet would be an exercise in futility, given the worldwide progagation of NNTP servers.

In News for Nerds news (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 11 years ago | (#6564176)

KDE 3.1.3 was kealesed. [windowmaker.org]

let's fight back (5, Interesting)

Gnaythan1 (214245) | about 11 years ago | (#6564177)

according to this http://www.techcentralstation.com/1051/techwrapper .jsp?PID=1051-250&CID=1051-072903B

quote:
"Recently, Republican Senator Sam Brownback offered an amendment to an FTC reauthorization bill that would force "owners of digital media products to file an actual case in a court of law in order to obtain the identifying information of an ISP subscriber" rather than the current standard where the subpoena power is virtually unchecked."


Sounds like Sam Brownback has the right idea, and I want to give him some encouragement...

It seems that money is the only thing these people seem to care about, so I think I will take what I would have spent on a music CD (about 20 bucks) and send a money order to this guys campaign fund instead. I think I will add a nice little note on why I did that. Too bad I can't vote for him directly...

I think I'll send a note to my senator as well, along with a copy of the Brownback note, explaining why I'm not sending HIM any money.

Twenty bucks isn't much.... but what happens if just one percent of the people who read this do the same thing? Hell I might make this an ongoing project, and send twenty bucks a month to whatever congress-critter seems to deserve it the most at the moment.

Re:let's fight back (1)

jorupp (529670) | about 11 years ago | (#6564295)

Did you read the press release from his website? [senate.gov]

-quote-
Chairman McCain agreed to hold a hearing on this and other important digital rights management issues next month, and Sen. Brownback withdrew this amendment.
-quote-

Draw your own conclusion.....

no where to hide using software? (2, Interesting)

garcia (6573) | about 11 years ago | (#6564178)

Thinking of hiding behind nicknames like "hottdudeXXX" or "bluemonkey13" or even installing new software to cloak your identity? Think again, says Mr Ishikawa.

"We got an e-mail last week from someone saying 'How did you find me? I used Peer Guardian' and he thought that would save him from our spiders. There is nowhere to hide."


What about P2P networks that encrypt all traffic? How are they going to determine what media you have (based on the 30s that they apparently download from you) when it's all encrypted?

How about when I trading legal copies of music (like SHN/FLAC/etc Grateful Dead shows?) Will these 30s clips match up?

Of course the article is narrow on details.

This "spider" crap worries me.

Re:no where to hide using software? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 11 years ago | (#6564303)

This is not complicated. Sure, everything's encrypted. Whatever. They log on as a normal user. They see your computer. They see files. They have your IP, as this is essential in any connection (except maybe some bizarre form of broadcast, which I don't believe is possible using TCP/IP). They look at the files you're sharing. They sue you.

This is completely legit, and totally legal. They're finding people who are illegally allowing others to download copyright protected works and collecting identifying information.

The only way to hide is to differentiate between "users who won't sue me" and "copyright bounty hunters who will". Good luck on that. Maybe they sign onto Kazaa as CopyrightBountyHunter.

As a side note, anyone who thinks these people are evil is basing his or her thoughts on how much he or she likes file trading. File trading is 100% illegal and immoral. All of the "I wouldn't have bought it anyway" arguments are complete BS put forward by sufferers of cognitive disonance. The only people at fault for the high prices of CDs are artists -- you sign up with The Monopoly, you buy into The Monopoly's system (that is, screw the artist and the consumer for The Monopoly's sake). Until artists realize this and start publishing independantly online using an iTMS-like service, no one will "win".

Re:no where to hide using software? (1)

westyvw (653833) | about 11 years ago | (#6564339)

Worries me too. I ONLY share legal files, such as your example of live music made open by bands, but I do so with relish, because it is so convenient, and I knew what it was like to have limited ways to get to this music. I have a feeling my ISP is gonna get to wondering what I am up to, even though all traffic is legal. I also wonder if spiders are gonna do the same.

The solution is to knock it off. AOL proved that discs cost nothing to make. Therefore all studio work by musicians is nothing more then an ad. We should pay to see them perform, but NEVER to here some music made in a studio. How would you like a job where you played for the months then sat back and earned money, (or worse gave all your money to the people who funded that time)? Shouldnt they work 5 days a week 8 hours a day?!?!?!? Hell yeah they should playing their songs and earning money.

As for movies, we should pay for the experience of sitting in a big theatre, but if I want to watch it at home, it should be fair game to trade it. I am for a OPEN FREE SOCIETY and I am done with copyright crap.

They are criminals! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 11 years ago | (#6564181)

Just another example of the relentless campaign to treat file swappers as criminals...

There are copyright laws and these people are breaking them. They're criminals so they should be treated like criminals!

Now whether there should be copyright laws... That's another story.

Re:They are criminals! (4, Funny)

El (94934) | about 11 years ago | (#6564256)

Damn straight! And anybody driving 1 mph over the speed limit should be treated like a criminal too! And people driving without wearing their seatbelts should be given the death sentence!

Remember, folks: if you go to the bathroom during the commercials, you are stealing that television broadcast!

Didn't we learn anything from prohibition? If half the population routine violate a law, then perhaps it makes more sense to change the law than to put half the population in jail.

Re:They are criminals! (1)

cliffy2000 (185461) | about 11 years ago | (#6564358)

You are correct on that last statement. But that's all.
As far as driving without your seatbeat deserving the death sentence, that's unnecessary. Let them dig their own graves.
And furthermore, not only is it legal to not watch commercials, but it is illegal to tape a show and fast forward through the commercials. So long as you are not showing the video tape in a non-private (commercial) area.

'Crime'? (5, Insightful)

heir2chaos (656103) | about 11 years ago | (#6564186)

Look, I file swap, but it is still illegal to trade copyrighted material. Everyone that trades files knows this, it is just that they don't care. It's just like speeding, it's illegal, but it doesn't matter until you get caught.

Re:'Crime'? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 11 years ago | (#6564359)

And just like speeding, there is no way to undo once you are caught...the best defence is not to do it in the first place.

Most Bootlegged Songs?!? (3, Funny)

burgburgburg (574866) | about 11 years ago | (#6564189)

Ignoring the implication of the phrase, I find this list really hard to accept:

Busta Rhymes: Pass the Courvoisier
U2: I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For
Bon Jovi: You Give Love A Bad Name
Van Halen: Hot for Teacher

Re:Most Bootlegged Songs?!? (2, Funny)

garcia (6573) | about 11 years ago | (#6564232)

don't worry, it's another RIAA tactic. Tell people on the Internet about the most popular downloads on P2P networks so that they can pinpoint you easily.

Only the idiots will believe this crap, they will go and download the files, and they will be able to quickly find you because NO ONE ELSE WOULD DOWNLOAD THAT CRAP.

Busta Rhymes my ass :)

Going away (5, Funny)

henrygb (668225) | about 11 years ago | (#6564198)

"About 85% of the people we send notices to go away and we never see them again"

Especially if they have dynamically allocated IP addresses.

What is this, the Gestapo? (1, Interesting)

The Masked Fruitcake (630078) | about 11 years ago | (#6564199)

Good grief! With comments like "there is nowhere to hide", or, "If you have an active internet address or connection and you are actively sharing files, our spiders will find you", these people are sounding like power-tripped teenagers! It really makes you kind of sick to see the apparent pleasure these people derive from doing this. They are proud of infiltrating your computer and gathering your personal information in order to bully you into submission. *shudder* I guess that's the sort of personality that it takes to accept a job like that in the first place.

How secure is this? (2, Interesting)

CmdrWass (570427) | about 11 years ago | (#6564202)

From the original post:

'knowing the right people and having a wealth of content on your hard disk to get into the clique.'"

If anyone already on the network can allow someone onto the network, then there is still a possibility of someone charming their way into the trust of others. They need to take it one step further, and give a unique public key/private key to each individual, and have a single person responsible for adding people to the network. Otherwise, if anyone on the network can invite anyone else, then the network will grow exponentially, and then you won't be able to control the network.

Re:How secure is this? (2, Interesting)

stratjakt (596332) | about 11 years ago | (#6564239)

Why dont you ask all the folks in DoD, RaZoR1911, FairLiGHT, etc how secure this is?

Yeah, your circle of trust can be corrupted.

It's still safer to be the guy in the limo distributing bricks of cocaine, than the kid on the streetcorner selling it in $10 bags.

The digital detectives have it easy (4, Funny)

Rosco P. Coltrane (209368) | about 11 years ago | (#6564205)

They have been described as Hollywood's digital detectives and they have a warning for anyone illegally trading music or movies: "You can run but you can never hide."

Hell, given that most computer geeks have trouble getting out of their chair, let alone run, I'd say they're in pretty deep trouble ...

No worky (1)

The Bungi (221687) | about 11 years ago | (#6564212)

Peer networks are a hit because of the sheer volume of content they carry. Looking for that weird song you heard while in vacation in Italy 10 years ago and you only know the first name of the performer? It's probably out there. That's what makes Kazaa and its ilk attractive, and that's why Napster was such a huge success.

In any case, "private peer networks" sound suspiciously like "pedophile rings", especially to the hysterical media folks.

The Risk of Private Networks (2, Insightful)

KrispyKringle (672903) | about 11 years ago | (#6564220)

I don't see why the RIAA or other copyright holders would be all that concerned about private sharing networks. Security, even in regards to copyrights, is a balance between how expensive the system is and how expensive an intrusion is.

A private network can never have the volume of sharing, and hence harm to the copyright holders, that the big public networks like Kazaa have. And the cost of tracking them down is prohibitive. So I don't see this as something the RIAA needs to get worked up over any time soon. "Private" sharing, in some form or another, has been going on for decades. Analog tapes and software piracy before the days of the Internet are just two examples of tacitly-accepted piracy which was simply too low-volume to be an issue.

Now, if something like Freenet were to provide fully anonymous, public sharing with the ease-of use and pervasiveness of Kazaa, I think the RIAA would be scared.

Re:The Risk of Private Networks (3, Insightful)

garcia (6573) | about 11 years ago | (#6564276)

Now, if something like Freenet were to provide fully anonymous, public sharing with the ease-of use and pervasiveness of Kazaa, I think the RIAA would be scared.

Duh, that's why they are publically saying it is hard to use in every article they can. They want the public to be afraid to even try it.

They know that us geeks don't care, but they know that the public only believes what they are fed.

If Joe Blow 13 year old (clueless) hears that Freenet is hard to use over and over, he is less likely to try it.

Sharing music is illegal. (1)

generic-man (33649) | about 11 years ago | (#6564223)

It is illegal to publicly distribute copyrighted works without the copyright holder's consent.

People who use any publically available service to upload copyrighted works without the copyright holder's consent are breaking the law.

If you consider this crime to be a measure of "civil disobedience" against the evil entertainment industry, then you should be prepared to face jail time as many famous practitioners of civil disobedience have in the past.

I don't understand what is so "murky" about this issue.

Re:Sharing music is illegal. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 11 years ago | (#6564282)

Because I live in Canada, where it is legal to burn music I download to a CD because I have all ready paid the "music tax" for the CD-R's that I buy.

Americans pay the tax for the CD-R's but don't have any other protections.

Re:Sharing music is illegal. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 11 years ago | (#6564318)

Because for example in my countrys legislation, copying MP3 or any other music media file from the internet is _NOT_ illegal. Infact, you can just download left and right without the fear of litigation. But distribution of these files to a second party is illegal.

So, if I download a lot and don't share at all, I'm not breaking the laws here. Funny ain't it :)

Re:Sharing music is illegal. (1)

generic-man (33649) | about 11 years ago | (#6564364)

Sorry, that should be "Sharing music in the United States of America is illegal." Please insert the words "in the United States of America" after each occurrence of the words "illegal" or "law" in the parent post and read again.

I am happy for those citizens of other countries who are allowed to publicly distribute copyrighted works without the copyright holder's consent, but this is not the issue at hand. The issue is that American companies are within their rights to prosecute American citizens who are in violation of American law.

This is the kind of people they're dealing with? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 11 years ago | (#6564231)


"Thinking of hiding behind nicknames like "hottdudeXXX" or "bluemonkey13" or even installing new software to cloak your identity? Think again, says Mr Ishikawa.

"We got an e-mail last week from someone saying 'How did you find me? I used Peer Guardian' and he thought that would save him from our spiders. There is nowhere to hide.""


Having read these two paragraphs, I think an untrained monkey with an old laptop, a pencil and a notebook could track down a few hundred people by itself, if this is the kind of person they're dealing with.

Scaremongers (1)

Rosco P. Coltrane (209368) | about 11 years ago | (#6564234)

There is no lock that can't be picked and our technology ensures that there is not a rock in the world you can hide under if you are sharing files.

In non-RIAA-threatening lingo : "we know how to run tcpdump".

Re:Scaremongers (1)

mhore (582354) | about 11 years ago | (#6564338)

In non-RIAA-threatening lingo : "we know how to run tcpdump".

Nah. I doubt they're that intelligent. They probably just mean that they can look at the username, and then type netstat from their Win command prompt (guess there's no DOS prompt anymore, eh?).

Silent Tristero P2P? (1)

discogravy (455376) | about 11 years ago | (#6564238)

Like the recently-pulled WASTE [stricken.org] ?

getting a large number of people that you trust using the same network -- so that you have access to large amounts of files -- is going to be a bigger problem than security, and that's a big problem in and of itself, really. Are the other private groups/programs that can be used for filesharing?

Overblown Language? (2, Funny)

DogIsMyCoprocessor (642655) | about 11 years ago | (#6564248)

"If you have an active internet address or connection and you are actively sharing files, our spiders will find you."

Sounds like something the "Your computer is broadcasting an internet address" guys could use. It could link to a place selling Raid by mail.

Hi tech (5, Funny)

bytesmythe (58644) | about 11 years ago | (#6564252)

"Using our matching technology, we identify the user name, the protocol they're using, which file-sharing protocol if it's just a web protocol or not. But the most important piece of information we detect is their IP address," explained Mr Ishikawa.

"Matching Technology"? Oh no! They've learned to use regular expressions to parse an unencrypted text stream! Good lord! Now no one will be safe swapping files online! However will the file sharers bypass the modern technological marvel of grep?

What's black and blue and doesn't want to f*uck..? (-1, Offtopic)

magsymp (562489) | about 11 years ago | (#6564260)

The 5 year old in my trunk!!! hahaha.

MOD PARENT UP!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 11 years ago | (#6564284)

HAHAHAH...

funny stuff.

ummm... no (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 11 years ago | (#6564316)

That's wrong!

-1 distasteful

DirectConnect (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 11 years ago | (#6564266)

I wonder about DirectConnect. DC allows the user to control the hub he wants to connect to.

How can these sources trace which hubs the user connects to?

Each hub have their own specific purpose (type of media) that you can connect with..

Last, some hubs require you to share a certain amout or else you will be booted... No Leechers with DC.

US vs. UK (flamebait not intended) (1)

rokzy (687636) | about 11 years ago | (#6564270)

a few clicks from the original story and you get to the following:

I live in the UK, but US computer users will be able to access the songs I share on file-swapping networks. Will the RIAA sue me?

No. The RIAA's UK equivalent, the British Phonographic Industry (BPI), says this is a US action that is affecting only music downloaders in the US because international laws are different. The RIAA cannot take action against people outside the US.

Is the BPI planning to sue UK users?

It has said it will not rule out suing individual users, but that it would be a "last resort". The BPI says it is currently trying to educate people - including sending out leaflets to colleges and large business - to tell people where they can download music legally.

It also says using peer-to-peer services risks downloading viruses. But if the RIAA's actions are successful, a similar system could be on the cards for the UK.

and on other countries:

Are other music industry groups going to take similar action?

Four countries in Europe have already taken action - Germany, Switzerland, Denmark and Italy, says the International Federation for the Phonographic Industry (IFPI). German police impounded computer equipment in April in the town of Furth that had been used to upload up to one million files. In Italy at least 75 actions have been taken.

Will legitimate online services ever rival the peer-to-peer sites?

The launch of the Apple system iTunes, where US users can choose from 200,000 songs at 99 cents a song has been a huge success, with more than five million songs downloaded in the first month. The system will be launched in Europe later this year. Microsoft are also in discussion with Universal, the world's biggest music group, about a similar system.

the whole thing is here:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/entertainment/mu sic/302 2170.stm

Re:US vs. UK (flamebait not intended) (1)

RevSmiley (226151) | about 11 years ago | (#6564344)

I will do without music before I spend one dime on getting Music from Microsoft.

Investigate Buymusic.com (4, Interesting)

burgburgburg (574866) | about 11 years ago | (#6564274)

As reported [macslash.org] on MacSlash [macslash.org] , Buymusic.com is violating copyrights. Jody Whitesides, a musician, found an old CD [buymusic.com] he made for sale on the Buymusic.com site without ever being informed/asked/paid. He checked and also found albums from friends of his. As it turns out, they all had dealings with a brick and mortar distribution company called Orchard in the 90's that supposedly went out of business. They didn't and now it seems that anyone who had dealings with them might be on Buymusic.com without their knowledge, consent or recompense.

If they want to search our networks... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 11 years ago | (#6564279)

All I have to say is if they want to scan/search our networks for illegal music (for those of us that don't have them or even allow that sort of thing to go on) they'll have to pay us for the bandwidth that they use. I refuse to let someone freely waste my bandwidth, especially if I pay for it. If Mark Ishikawa "former hacker" CEO of BayTSP wants to scan our networks I say send me a big (read 10 figure) fat check and you're welcome to scan my network all you want. I refuse for someone to make money off of me if while running up my bandwidth usage bill. Companies like his can kiss my donkey's butt!

ERGHHH!!!!

$anonymity (2, Interesting)

kuleiana (629890) | about 11 years ago | (#6564285)

As human beings we have the right to anonymity as a basic human privelege. We should not abuse that right to harm others, nor should we be denied the right to not be public if we wish. The RIAA and similar organizations seek to eliminate that right in a certain venue in an attempt to control more resources utterly, i.e., the musical recordings of the artists who they supposedly, fully "represent".

Does anyone remember what happened to anon.penet.fi? And now hotmail.com and the equivalent msn are owned by microsoft and extremely popular years later, after the first popular anonymous e-mail service (Penet) was shut down for allegedly committing a crime through offering anonymous e-mail.

I don't understand anyone's surprise. (1)

xNoLaNx (653172) | about 11 years ago | (#6564288)

The media is run by politicians which are in turn paid off by groups like the RIAA. A large news organization like the BBC is undoubtedly pushing to have people fear the RIAA and roll over for them. I don't see, though, how they(news groups, not the BBC specifically) get interviews with people and believe theyre so damn smart. Talking about being unable to hide. Pfft, just because most kazaa users are 14 year olds downloading the new ICP or Britney Spears doesn't mean that these detectives of P2P sharing are any good... Damn over-hyping media.

Enough with the editorializing (4, Insightful)

TrollBridge (550878) | about 11 years ago | (#6564292)

"...when their 'crime' is murky at best."

I really wish article submitters would stick with the facts and stop injecting their opinions into the stories they are submitting. Statements such as that only makes one sound like a zealot (granted, though, there are plenty of people who agree with it).

This is news? (1)

hankaholic (32239) | about 11 years ago | (#6564296)

Sometimes I can't believe what makes the front page. Apparently it comes as a shock to Michael that groups of people who trust each other will provide software and other collections of bits to others on the group.

I remember people using war-ftpd [jgaa.com] to share so-called "warez" to each other, long before the average person had ever heard of Winamp.

How is it newsworthy that people do the same thing with music?

Ugh ugh ugh.

If this story is worth the front page, then this comment is worth reading.

Hint: neither is true.

You aren't required... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 11 years ago | (#6564299)

to know the right people and to have a wealth of content on your hard disk, just skilled fingers, tongue and some savvy [parelli.com] to get into a mare.

Since when are private warez sites a new thing? (1)

kaltkalt (620110) | about 11 years ago | (#6564307)

Private warez sites have existed since the first modem. They've never been immune from police. I don't see how a site full of mp3's is any different than a site full of adobe software (and if it's a private ftp site, chances are it's gonna have a bit of both). I'm not making any moral judgments on such sites, but am merely wondering why this is something considered "new" and why anyone would think that it is secure from prosecution?

Pinkerton? (4, Funny)

cosyne (324176) | about 11 years ago | (#6564308)

As well as making money, Mr Ishikawa's vision for BayTSP is to become a hi-tech version of Pinkerton, the legendary detective agency that protected presidents like Abraham Lincoln ...

Ok, that may not be the best example there, guys.

This quote is very telling (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 11 years ago | (#6564313)

As well as making money, Mr Ishikawa's vision for BayTSP is to become a hi-tech version of Pinkerton, the legendary detective agency that protected presidents like Abraham Lincoln and hunted outlaws like Jesse James.
The Pinkertons did a great job protecting Lincoln, except for the assassination part and their hunt for Jesse James was a success only in that it didn't result in a capture.

Re:This quote is very telling (4, Interesting)

El (94934) | about 11 years ago | (#6564362)

This is a excellent analogy; the Pinkerton men were almost universally hated assholes who made a habit out of violating people's rights and using strongarm tactics to do their master's bidding. When companies needed somebody to beat up strikers to end a strike, who did they call? Pinkerton.

I was using DECNET until I read this article (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 11 years ago | (#6564342)

I have been locked in my basement for the past fifteen years with my cluster of VAX systems happily running DECNET... ...until I read this article...
Now I discover this whole new world using the previously secret TCP/IP protocol!
How exciting.
I will be "FTP-ing" some files today!

Underground (2, Insightful)

ispinstr (637677) | about 11 years ago | (#6564351)

Trading is just going to move underground. If you have a smaller trading group with enough suppliers of content, there is no need to share with everybody in the world. A virtual, private P2P will be tough to track down. This is not really a bad thing. It will cut down on the trading of files by most people since suppliers are hard to find. It will go back to trading between friends which has been around for decades now but now it will be digital sharing rather than analog.

CNN story (2, Insightful)

harmonica (29841) | about 11 years ago | (#6564355)

"You'll know they're talking, but you won't know what they're saying. It's quite impossible to crack the algorithms," said Lowrey, whose company, Endeavors Technology, is designing a file-sharing system for corporate clients.

Actually, you don't even know they're talking. A program can send small encrypted blocks regardless of whether the user actually sent a message. If nothing is to be exchanged some no-op message can be transferred which is as large as a normal encrypted message block. Don't let the attacker know more than necessary.

As for the elitist country-club type of sharing cliques - those always existed. Whether they are using private IRC channels, FTP or some newer p2p system like DC, that's not much of a difference. Of course release groups don't let anybody join, to name one example.

The problem with private circles - they can always be infiltrated by 'traitors'. It's not a technical problem anymore once a person feels threatened enough to cooperate with the police.

Cringley profiled him last year (1)

kreinsch (82720) | about 11 years ago | (#6564357)

Cringley did a profile of Ishikawa last year [pbs.org] .

prime (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 11 years ago | (#6564360)

check out this website.. it says it all
www.penguinhosting.net/~jpeck/prime/
let me know what you think

cry me a river... (0, Offtopic)

The Lynxpro (657990) | about 11 years ago | (#6564366)

I'm sorry, but I'm not going to shed a tear over people file trading Busta Rhymes material, or just about any rap for that matter. Its time our society stops labeling rappers as "artists" (for the most part). So if file traders prevent people like Suge Knight and P Diddy (or 50 Cent)from making a fortune, so be it. Pitty though, since it is my opinion that Dr. Dre is talented...

6 degrees of separation (5, Interesting)

jemenake (595948) | about 11 years ago | (#6564369)

CNN has a story on 'exclusive' Peer to Peer networks, that require 'knowing the right people and having a wealth of content on your hard disk to get into the clique
Over the last several months, I've begun to conclude that something like this is the only way that file swapping can really endure. Basically, my idea was that each person's file swapping client would only make/accept connections to/from people that you trust: friends, family, etc.

The twist would be that the system would allow relaying of searches and of actual files. In other words, if I request a file that is on my friend's friend's computer, then the file has to come through the computer of our mutual friend. The whole idea is to keep things as encapsulated as possible... kinda like how terrorist cells work.

Now, I know that this increases network traffic... adds a lot of opportunities for a "weaker link" in the chain (imagine if one of the people in the relay chain is using a 56k modem)... decreases the "connectedness" of the whole sharing network, etc. However, I think this is the only real way to keep the RIAA from just being able to download a song and, *pow*, have the IP of someone to sue.

Also, some of these problems mentioned might be assuaged by the fact that people might feel more comfortable leaving their stuff shared. I, for one, have gobs and gobs of stuff that I could share, but I don't... because I have way too much to lose. However, if I knew that the only people who could connect to me would be people that I know... I'd have tons of stuff up and shared... 24/7.

The strange thing is that it seems to me that this was Aimster's plan, but they got shut down for some reason. But I don't know why.
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