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Canada Piracy The Media

NewsCorp/NDS Sets Up Operation To Expose Canadian Pirates; What Could Go Wrong? 95

Presto Vivace writes "Murdoch's Pirates is a business book that reads like a thriller. The chapter excerpted in the Sydney Morning Herald explains how Operation Duck, an effort to discover the identify Canadian pay TV pirates, went horribly wrong. 'By October 25 Oliver had been in Toronto four days and had programmed a swag of pirate cards, using a program he had ripped off another pirate hack. And he had been paid a lot of money. That evening, he met with two piracy dealers in a car and programmed a few cards for them with his portable programmer box, to demonstrate that it worked. The following night Oliver received a call from a friend in London, a partner in his old piracy ring, who was sleeping with a woman who worked for Federal Express. 'He told me, these guys [from the previous night] sent a parcel to Larry Rissler,' Oliver recalls. Rissler was a former FBI agent who headed the Office of Signal Integrity—the operational security division—of DirecTV, and he had been hunting Oliver for some time. One of the dealers Oliver had met was a Rissler informant and he had despatched a re-programmed smartcard by FedEx to his boss. The parcel would be with Rissler early the next morning—if it wasn't already there.' The story reads like some perverse blend of James Bond and the Pink Panther. It is just amazing."
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NewsCorp/NDS Sets Up Operation To Expose Canadian Pirates; What Could Go Wrong?

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  • Reading TFS (Score:5, Interesting)

    by oodaloop ( 1229816 ) on Tuesday October 30, 2012 @10:26AM (#41817663)

    The story reads like some perverse blend of James Bond and the Pink Panther.

    Well, TFS reads like a chinese instruction manual. What the hell? Piracy dealers? Discover the identify?

  • They would know.... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday October 30, 2012 @10:42AM (#41817897)

    After all, NewsCorp seems to have funded the design, manufacture, and distribution of hacked cards to bring down British DTV competition. (And were successful. Poor ITV)

    Not to mention illegally listening to voicemail...

    Maybe they should cut their piracy out first.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday October 30, 2012 @10:50AM (#41817993)

    Murdoch's NewsCorp makes Billions of Dollars in Profit/Revenues a year, and is one of the largest media companies in the world. Yet NewsCorp only pays about 4% in Taxes on all this income, thanks to an intricate network of hundreds of shell-companies in tax havens like Bermuda and the Cayman Islands.

    So you're saying they are 100% in compliance with the law and are paying all their taxes?

    I'm more concerned with the Obama aides in the White House [] who owe back taxes. They all have security clearances, and an adversary could use that as leverage to extract intelligence or other favors.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday October 30, 2012 @11:30AM (#41818475)

    Murdoch's NewsCorp was caught pirating DirectTV's cards. Claiming it was done by their NDS subsidiary, and was really to benefit Direct TV, misses the fact that NewsCorp and DirectTV were rivals in cable TV.

    Murdoch did it to damage Direct TVs business, it was behind the pirating to make selling Direct TV cards not worthwhile to sell.

    Proving you can program a card, doesn't get you an in with other people who can program cards. It makes you a competitor, a rival, someone who might like to rat them out at the first meeting. So this version of events doesn't make sense.

    1. The basic premis that Oliver was programming cards to get an in with other card programmers. Doesn't make sense.
    2. The girlfriend who has access to Fedex computers and tracks all packages and happens to known enough to make a connection. That doesn't make sense.
    3. The argument that Oliver ran from Direct TV because DirectTV wasn't 'trustworthy'... garbage. If he really had been investigating pirates, he'd hand over his info to DirectTV and they be fully behind him, and they're certainly not connected to the pirates of their own cards.
    4. The claims that NDS only knew him as 'Alex', why would they need to keep deniability if he was legit? Again bollocks.

    So what we have here is a work of fiction, to try to make News Corp look like good guys, at a time when they've been caught hacking phones.

    What they did was simple, their subsidiary had a contract to make cards and had been bought out by Murdoch, they then pirated DirectTVs cards to try to drive out their competitors. They hid the links between their card subsidiary and their pirate. He got caught.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday October 30, 2012 @11:43AM (#41818639)

    In 2002, Canal Plus accused NDS of extracting the UserROM code from the MediaGuard cards and leaking it onto the internet.[15] According to The Guardian, the NDS laboratory in Haifa, Israel had been working on breaking the SECA-produced MediaGuard smartcards used by Canal+, ITV Digital and other non-Murdoch-owned TV companies throughout Europe. Canal Plus brought a $3 billion lawsuit against NDS but later dropped the action. News Corporation agreed to buy Canal Plus's struggling Italian operation Telepiu.[16][17]

    "On 26 March 2012, the BBC programme Panorama broadcast that NDS employed computer hacking to undermine the business of ONDigital.[19] At the time, ONDigital was the primary TV rival in Britain of BSkyB, a News Corporation company. The accusations arise from emails obtained by the BBC, and an interview with Lee Gibling, the operator of a hacking website, who claims he was paid up to £60,000 per year by Ray Adams, NDS head of security.[20] UK broadcasting watchdog Ofcom is to investigate these claims.[21] These claims are vigorously denied by NDS and NewsCorp.[22]"

The absent ones are always at fault.