Tuesday, 18 September 2007

Spyware / Adware / Malware / Trojan / Virus / Rootkit Coders & Their Pals: Microsoft & the DMCA

I like to believe sometimes that security threats are a kind of eugenic predator on the digital savanna that, in the long run, acts as a Darwinian selector and results in better and safer operating systems for everybody.

But they don't, because the only operating systems they tend to affect are created by Microsoft, who are cunts, and decide to limit problems by limiting user options. This creates a situation where only people who are able to hack Microsoft products are able to really effect change on the operating system. The old "if guns are outlawed only outlaws have guns" argument.

I recently bought a new computer. Within one day of using it, going online only to get an update for Internet Explorer, the latest Service Pack, the latest version of Firefox and pick up a few of the latest versions of my favourite security programs, I had a trojan that constantly popped up browser windows hocking me anti-spyware and antivirus software, and keylogging me and sending my info to the scumfucking, cocksucking, arsehole twats who were trying to sell it to me. I investigated their product and discovered that a class action suit is being filed, but it boggles the mind that the bastards aren't in jail already for invading user privacy, since the trojan has their company name on it.

What made the situation fantastically worse is that these clever chaps, not being scrupulous, wrote code that made Windows refuse me permission to terminate the trojan process and delete the file. I tried every fix available, but this particular gremlin mutates, and so none worked and I had to format and start over.

You know why the fixes don't really work? Because nobody playing by the rules can write software that does the necessary actions, because Microsoft has the Digital Millennium Copyright Act protecting their "secrets". The secrets all the hackers already know. Yes, even violating the DMCA for reasons of protecting one's own security is punishable. No, really: your tax money will pay for the jackboots to kick down your door because Microsoft and their ilk don't trust you to do the job that they won't.