Security Web Digest: FCC Considering Digital TV AntiPiracy Codes ... and More

By eweek  |  Posted 2003-10-20 Print this article Print

  • RIAA sends warning letters to 204 music mass-sharers
  • Finland considering child tracking by cell phone
  • Public quantum key repository in the works
  • Zone Labs to bundle Cloudmark's SpamNet with ZoneAlarm Pro
  • Intellectual Property

    The Federal Communications Commission is considering proposals promoted by the entertainment industry that would help block Internet piracy of entertainment that is digitally transmitted. Due out later this month, the rule would revolve around the "broadcast flag" which would involve the use of computer code embedded in digital TV signals to be read by various devices like television sets or video recorders. The Consumer Electronics Association is neutral on the issue, noting that its members are divided.

    Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) has launched the next phase of its war on digital piracy. The organization has sent a total of 204 letters to individuals last week, each of whom, it claims, has made at least 1,000 songs available for upload on peer-to-peer file-trading services such as Kazaa. Moreover, the association said it intends to continue "identifying illegal file sharers for purposes of enforcement."


    Finland has proposed a new law that would let parents track the movements of their young children via mobile phone, even without their consent, in a move that could set an EU benchmark in privacy and handset use. According to the draft, individuals aged 15 or older could only be tracked after giving their consent, but for children under 15 such consent could also be given by their parents or guardians. Parliament will likely start discussing the proposal early in November, but state officials and politicians said it was too early to estimate when the law could be passed.


    Uncrackable encryption based on quantum-key distribution could soon come to a network near you. Id Quantique SA, World Internet Secure Key (WiseKey) SA and the International Organization for the Security of Electronic Transactions announced a partnership to create the infrastructure necessary for worldwide distribution of unbreakable quantum keys. Id Quantique will supply the hardware, WiseKey the secure-key repository and the nonprofit organization--which is known as OISTE, its French acronym--the certification and registration authorities worldwide. All three are headquartered in Geneva.


    Computer-security maker Zone Labs will bundle antispam software from Cloudmark with its products, both companies are expected to announce Tuesday. Zone Labs will bundle Cloudmarks SpamNet with its online sales of ZoneAlarm Pro and ZoneAlarm Plus firewall products, according to Karl Jacob, Cloudmarks chief executive. Cloudmark has about 650,000 registered users of its SpamNet product.


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