More on the MediaMax DRM software



The OTHER Sony-BMG DRM (Digital Rights Management) software is in the news again today. freedom-to-tinker which did great research into the security flaws that the UNINSTALL process for both XCP and MediaMax had is back to give more disturbing news. What’s interesting here is that even declining the EULA for the software is no protection against having the MediaMax system service install and run….


From the freedom-to-tinker post…

In the comments to our last MediaMax story, reader free980211 pointed out that the driver sometimes becomes permanently activated if the same protected CD is used more than once, even if the user never agrees to the EULA. This wasn’t apparent from my earlier tests because they were conducted under tightly controlled conditions, with each trial beginning from a fresh Windows installation and involving only carefully scripted operations. I’ve performed further tests and can now confirm that MediaMax is permanently activated in several common situations in spite of explicitly withheld consent.

Further they have an analysis of the situations that this software is enabled…

When you insert a CD containing either version of MediaMax, an installer program automatically starts (unless you have disabled the Windows autorun feature). This installer places the copy protection driver and other files on the hard disk, and then presents a license agreement, which you are asked to accept or decline. In the following scenarios the driver may become permanently activated even if you always decline the agreement:

You insert a CD-3 album, then later insert an MM-5 album

You insert an MM-5 album, then later insert a CD-3 album

You insert an MM-5 album, reboot, then later insert the same album or another MM-5 album

These steps don’t have to take place all at once. They can happen over a period of weeks or months.

So is it anything other than an annoyance for those that would try to illegaly copy discs (or even those that might LEGALLY want to copy tracks to a portable device?) Yes, as the software installs as a kernel driver it can post significant security risks. (Are there vulnerabilities for MediaMax??? What then – full control over the pc?)

They sum up nicely.

Is this behavior illegal? It should be. Installation of system level software where the user has explicitly denied permission raises serious security concerns and is wrong.

I think the pressure deserves to remain high on Sony-BMG until they step back from this practice.

–update 11/29 12:48AM EST–
Eweek has an editorial on Sony’s poor handling of the DRM rootkit. In fact it’s a fairly stinging writeup entitled “Rootkit DRM Constitutes Security Malpractice” It does hold their feet to the fire, not just for the one they were caught with XCP, but the OTHER one mentioned above (MediaMax). There is fair blame for Microsoft as well..

We think it’s worth remembering, however, that the origin of the current malady can be traced back to the dangerously lax security in the Windows XP operating system.

Related Posts

Blog Traffic Exchange Related Posts
  • How effective is the MediaMax copy protection? One of the sub-stories in all the Sony DRM mess of the last month with the XCP copy protection was that it was really an ineffective way of preventing copying of music anyway. In other words, you could press shift while inserting the cd to avoid the installer, then other......
  • Sunncomm/MediaMax software fix released What a long journey it's been and there is progress in the Sony DRM story. The main issue in the Sony controversy was the XCP DRM software (Digital Rights Management) which was made by first4internet. However, as the first rootkit was discovered, questions began about the MediaMax software (made by......
  • Adobe Acrobat vulnerabilities.... According to The Register among other sources, there is a vulnerability in all Acrobat and Reader software prior to the following safe release numbers: Windows and Mac Reader users please install 7.0.3 or 6.0.4 to be fixed (all other 7 series and 6 series versions are vulnerable). Acrobat users on......
Blog Traffic Exchange Related Websites
  • Corporate Blog Security Issues If you are planning on starting your own corporate blog or executive blog, or if you already have a corporate blog that you are writing in, then one of your greatest concerns should be corporate blog security issues. There are a variety of different corporate blogging security issues that you......
  • Home Security - Don't Make Yourself a Target In 2004, the Justice Bureau released the statistics that nearly one in six homes were burgled, that 75% of all crime was related to property and that in 90% of the burglaries the burglar gained access into the home. Every 3 seconds a property crime occurs, and every 15 seconds......
  • How To Save $100-$1,000 By Troubleshooting Your Faulty Computer “Oh, wow. Looks like it’s completely dead! At this point, it’s not even worth saving. You might as well just buy a new computer.” “Really, we can’t just fix it? It’s only 2 years old!” Have you ever had that conversation before? It’s pretty common at retail establishments like Best......
en.pdf24.org    Send article as PDF   

Similar Posts


See what happened this day in history from either BBC Wikipedia
Search:
Keywords:
Amazon Logo

Comments are closed.


Switch to our mobile site