Sony's Rootkit makes your computer into a virus haven.

#1
Well here's proof of how RIAAs measures can cause harm to others. Sony came up with the idea of making their CDs carry a Windows rootkit which installs itself to your PC without permission and makes the CD uncopyable.

Unfortunately not only does the rootkit F**k up your PC requiring a reinstall it also allows other processes to get onto your PC and hide themselves from anything else.

The first example of this is a WoW cheat that is completely undetectable by Blizzard's Warden program but how long is it going to be before virus makers figure out that they can exploit this to make bot nets that are completely undetectable to anti-virus and anti-spyware programs?

To be honest I think this sort of thing has a potential class action lawsuit stamped all over it. If Sony have made it easier to compromise a machine without even bothering to warn the user first I see no reason why they can't be prosecuted under anti virus laws.

I'll tell you one thing for certain. I'm not letting a single Sony CD touch my PC from now on. I'm gonna download everything I want by any band they publish :D
Karajorma's Freespace FAQ

[Seeds Of Rebellion ] - [Mind Games]

#3
Good think is that now the rootkit scanners are also coming up from the producers of the anti-virus softwares. Atleast F-Secure has released a beta of their Blacklight scanner (free until 1st Jan 06).

It is also possible but difficult to remove the stuff Sony DRM installs. Worst from i have heard is that (in Finland) from the beginning of 2006 the large music sellers (in plular) are no longer going to tell which CD has copy protection and which doesn't so you could possibly get rootkit installed from a CD that doesn't have the text copy-protected written in some corner of it. So i think i won't buy a single CD from now on, just to play safe. Though Sony claims that they are no longer going to use this stuff i really do not believe them.

And the greatest problem with that sony stuff was that it hid all the files and reg entries having $sys$ or something similar in their names so that even most of the antivirus or registry editing softwares didn't detect them. So if any virus coder would have included the text in their viruses then it would have been impossible to detect these from any computer that had played copy protected CDs from Sony.

BTW that same software also reported to Sony each and every time a copyprotected music was played with the CPU. I think it is mentioned in the EULA that nothing is reported back to Sony... ah, here is the entry "However, the SOFTWARE will not be used at any time to collect any personal information from you, whether stored on YOUR COMPUTER or otherwise."

#6
There's a very simple way to avoid this. Don't play cds on your computer. Simple as that. For making mp3s etc. use the line-out from your stereo, and plug it into your soundcard.

This is not difficult, and avoids any copy protection that could ever be devised for cd media. No more problem....
Any fool can pull a trigger...
:flag209:
As the madmen play on words
And make us all dance to their song
To the tune of starving millions
To make a better kind of gun...

#7
This is so bloody stupid. No matter what the music publishers try, someone will always find a way to get around it. All this will do is piss people off.
That's why they're trying to legislate against analogue-to-digital conversion as a whole; http://www.theregister.co.uk/2005/11/02/analog_hole/

(EDIT; yeah, it's hollywood - but you can bet the music companies have a keen eye upon this too)

#8
Problem is that if you simply delete the Sony crap you kill your OS and end up having to reinstall XP.

How F**ked up is that?
Yea it is a more than bit f**ked up. But IIRC by contacting Sony or the firm that actually produced the crappy software in the first place you can get some sort of removal instructions and software (used Active X components).

Though knowing the source i wouldn't get those unless i was absolutely certain that i had the rootkit installed into my CPU. No one knows if the removal kit contains even crappier software...

#9
Problem is that if you simply delete the Sony crap you kill your OS and end up having to reinstall XP.

How F**ked up is that?
Yea it is a more than bit f**ked up. But IIRC by contacting Sony or the firm that actually produced the crappy software in the first place you can get some sort of removal instructions and software (used Active X components).

Though knowing the source i wouldn't get those unless i was absolutely certain that i had the rootkit installed into my CPU. No one knows if the removal kit contains even crappier software...
AFAIK the Sony instructions only make the hidden rootkit registry files visible. Removing it still breaks Windows, and it still allows all sorts of nasty s### to get high level priveleges in Windows.

#10
Let me get this straight. Someone installs an unauthorised program on your PC without your knowledge and your only recourse is to ask them for a second program to run on your PC?

Disgraceful isn't it. And also counterproductive. Once this becomes better known who's going to use Sony products on their PCs?
There's a very simple way to avoid this. Don't play cds on your computer. Simple as that. For making mp3s etc. use the line-out from your stereo, and plug it into your soundcard.
Or you could just run something like Knoppix and rip from that. There's bugger all they can do to install a rootkit on a copy protected medium even if they did bother to make one for linux.
Karajorma's Freespace FAQ

[Seeds Of Rebellion ] - [Mind Games]

#12
All I new about removing the files is this (From F-Secure web page):
If you find this rootkit from your system, we recommend you don't remove it with our products. As this DRM system is implemented as a filter driver for the CD drive, just blindly removing it might result in an inaccessible CD drive letter. Instead, we recommend you contact Sony BMG directly via this web form and ask for directions on how to remove the software from your system. We've test driven this and they will provide you with tools to do this. However, they will install additional ActiveX components to your system while they are doing this so be adviced.
Original text actually contained a link to Sony's techincal complaints.F-Secure, news

#14
I can't even begin to describe how pissed off this whole thing makes me. It's downright illegal (or if not, it damn well should be) to pull **** like this without the user's prior knowledge or permission. Someone needs to get in these bastards' faces and let them know in no uncertain terms what utter assholes they really are. This **** has to stop now, before the next level of idiocity is reached.
A.K.A. Mongoose, for you HLP denizens
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