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Hacker Exploits Microsoft’s DRM

Microsoft has been fighting the software named "FairUse4WM" for over a month now. The software has been accused of erasing 'copy protection' from songs downloaded over the Net originating from subscription services such as 'Yahoo' and 'Napster'. Microsoft knows the hacker used this software to exploit its DRM (Digital Rights Management). It has sued the hacker accusing him of illegally accessing the source code.

In order to disable the software, Microsoft has launched two consecutive patches but failed to prevent the hacker. The hacker, notoriously known as "Viodentia", found its way to overcome the patches.

Microsoft's senior attorney, Bonnie MacNaughton expressed dismay at how the hacker stole the company's own intellectual property to create the tool. He said that the company was keeping a track of other hackers who might be also designing counter devices.

Very soon Microsoft will be launching its subscription service called "Zune", which will pose hurdles to present partners. A special DRM technique will be used in this service & device.

Microsoft is considering tackling FairUse4WM by two approaches. This is thought to be more aggressive than Microsoft's previous DRM combats. However, it is using the same method i.e., updating its countering technology based on the assessment of the hacker's software. Likewise, Microsoft has designed its 'copyright protection technology' to back its two patches. Copyright holders are worried about the DRM flaws that have let their music to freely spread on the Internet through P2P clients and illegal websites.

However, Viodentia said that FairUse4WM was a good thing for the industry for it shows that nothing gets changed in the absence of effective protection on content. He doubts if it has impact on subscription-based services. The worth of a subscription is its ongoing access to new titles, which is independent of the protection. He knows that no subscription company will admit the utility of FairUse4WM.

Microsoft had experienced hackers cracking their 'copy protection technology' earlier too for which they quickly made fixes. The company believes that they would be able to do the same for FairUse4WM. Microsoft is using legal procedures to trace the hacker and also taking help of the ISPs to trace the related IP addresses.

Related article: Hacker & Virus in MySpace

» SPAMfighter News - 04-10-2006

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