Hackers Exploit Holes in DRM Copyright Protection

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  • Written on: September 5th, 2006

In August two programs surfaced on the Internet that allowed users to remove the Digital Rights Management (DRM) copyright protection that prevents the songs from being duplicated without permission nor payment.

One of the programs targeted Apple’s FairPlay DRM protection and the other circumvented Windows Media DRM protection. While attempts to circumvent copyright protection on online music services is not new, Microsoft was forced to hastily release a patch to close the vulnerability in Media DRM, while Apple plans to solve its most recent woes in an update to its popular iTunes software package.

Fast resolutions to new vulnerabilities are vital because is copyrights are violated at will, music labels and artists are likely to turn a cold shoulder to selling their music online.

Microsoft’s patch must be applied by each online music service to be effective, which means implementation has been slow.

As usual, there is a fine line between security and freedom. Online music companies need to be careful not to become so militant with their patches as to annoy their users. On the other hand, if abusers are not dealt with decisively, there might be a whole lot less music to go around (legally at least) online.

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