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Interview with MediaDefender Defenders.com

Postby SlyckTom » Thu Sep 20, 2007 7:01 am

Unless you've been residing under a rock of monumental proportions, it should come as little surprise that MediaDefender's very confidential and private internal emails were intentionally leaked online. The contents compose of approximately 700 megabytes of email correspondence, a phone conversation between a law enforcement official and employees of MediaDefender, a list of IP addresses MediaDefender uses, and decoy file statistics used against the Gnutella network.

MediaDefender, as many people are aware, is an organization that intentionally floods P2P networks with corrupt or false files. Music and movie studios hire MediaDefender with the intention of discouraging file-sharers from downloading unauthorized files. MediaDefender has existed for the better part of 7 years, with a success rate that is now called into deep question. In one segment of the leaked emails, a MediaDefender employee shares the humor when a music executive questions whether his label's music is showing a decline in sharing on college campuses. Additionally, MiniNova's latest blog entry demonstrates MediaDefender's frustration while attempting to corrupt their torrent index.

The security failure surrounding MediaDefender is one of the most damaging intelligence leaks in recent Internet history. While likely to be downplayed by some, the sheer amount of intelligence divulged is colossal. The information contained within the 700 megabyte mbox file contains strategy, IP addresses used by MediaDefender, and tactics used against certain P2P networks. It's true enough however, that those who downplay the blunder may actually be correct. eMule (eDonkey2000) and BitTorrent appear difficult to corrupt, thanks in large part to the comment and moderation system of those running indexing sites. In that respect, MediaDefender's already weak effectiveness is irrelevant of the leak.

The windfall of the massive leak is taking on a culture of its own. MediaDefender-Defenders, those behind the attack, are considered heroes among many in the Internet community. Their efforts against one of the more disliked anti-P2P organizations has had a galvanizing effect and given a substantial victory to the opposition in the online copyright wars. The attack has elevated the conflict, as it demonstrates that the music and movie industry's efforts and agents are not immune to counter-intelligence manipulation.

So who's part of this micro-culture surrounding MediaDefender-Defenders? There's MediaDefender-Defenders.com, a collaborative project by two individuals looking to effectively disseminate the leaked information. They are not in any way connected to the MediaDefender-Defenders, however they do seek to carry on their message by simplifying access to the leaked information. The site contains all the currently leaked information with a small twist. "Forrest F.", who works on content of the site, managed to convert the mbox file into an organized and simplified web based thread - allowing otherwise unknowledgeable users to read the leaked contents.

"[The mbox file is] just big, and very hard to read. So after Googleing a few things, I found this: http://www.mhonarc.org. It's a Perl Script that does the job, after some heavy tweaking, I started converting -- it was 8 hours before it was done. I pretty much had taken a book that all the pages where out of order and chaos, and turned it into something easy to read. Also, I was brave; I don't know what the FBI/lawyers could [have] done to me."

Forrest F.'s endeavor hasn't been without its fair share of hiccups so far. His original domain, jrwr.hopto.org, was forced offline by his ISP, leaving his hopes nearly abandoned. However, an unnamed individual donated the MediaDefender-Defenders.com domain, and Forrest F. found a new host in Norway. Even under his initial domain, Forrest F. realized his idea would be successful.

"After some reading I was like "The Public needs to know this!" So I put it on a slow server in my own home, it was up for 17 hours - 1.4 million hits!"

Additionally, MediaDefender-Defenders.com has received two legal threats - one from MediaDefender's legal consul, and one from an individual who claims to be the CEO of the embattled company, Randy Saaf. The legal threat, which appears legitimate, threatens civil and criminal action for posting the material online. However, Forrest F. doesn't appear concerned.

"Since the server is in Norway, We don't have to really worry."

Yet in a concerning development, MediaDefender-Defenders.com was knocked offline yesterday in a suspicious Denial of Service attack. Remedying this situation, Forrest F. and his crew found refuge with none other than The Pirate Bay, who is hosting the site with prq.se. Since the switch, the site has been stable and with much fewer problems. And with over 2 Gbps throughput capacity, the new host should be able to handle the increasing load.

In a style reminiscent of The Pirate Bay, MediaDefender-Defenders.com has a public reaction page to their legal threats. Although MediaDefender and their legal counsel are no doubt taking this breech very seriously, it appears that MediaDefender-Defenders.com is following The Pirate Bay's lead, as it too believes that it's safe in Scandinavia.
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Re: Interview with MediaDefender Defenders.com

Postby GrymRpr » Thu Sep 20, 2007 7:08 am

Nice read :wink:

Figures, Right as you post this... More MD stuff is leaked.
:lol:
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Re: Interview with MediaDefender Defenders.com

Postby a44 » Thu Sep 20, 2007 8:33 am

Well, guess I was wrong to doubt The Slyck.
Nice interview.
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Re: Interview with MediaDefender Defenders.com

Postby zim » Thu Sep 20, 2007 8:47 am

good article.

but dont risk fuckin up your hands man.. pissed off nerves aint no joke.
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Re: Interview with MediaDefender Defenders.com

Postby ACiD.ru » Thu Sep 20, 2007 9:11 am

this Forrest is a brave fellow, good luck to him!
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Re: Interview with MediaDefender Defenders.com

Postby pkrisnin » Thu Sep 20, 2007 11:39 am

I don't see why they are bothering with Forrest, everything has been leaked.
What do they think a DOS attack and legal treat would bring it all back.
Bunch of moron, MD survival so far is testament to the dumb asses that are running the MPAA and the RIAA.
All that money spend on setting up fake server, files and bandwidth, just doesn't make any sense.
They rather waste that money on MD then changing their current marketing model.
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Re: Interview with MediaDefender Defenders.com

Postby hybrid-god » Thu Sep 20, 2007 1:03 pm

No doubt other idiots like media defender are checking and rechecking they're own security because of this! :lol: Hopefully they're all too late and hopefully we'll get to see more bits from others! CHEERS!!! :headbang:
"Corrupting all of humanity"
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Re: Interview with MediaDefender Defenders.com

Postby 939841 » Thu Sep 20, 2007 6:12 pm

You have MediaDefender-Defender.com as one of the references in the article. Please note that the real domain is MediaDefender-Defenders.com
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Postby MrFredPFL » Thu Sep 20, 2007 8:43 pm

fixed - thanks :)
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Re: Interview with MediaDefender Defenders.com

Postby piXelatedEmpire » Thu Sep 20, 2007 10:35 pm

I knew Slyck must have been upto something with these MD related stories... even if it was a tad slow ;) I KEED!!

Cheers Tom, interesting to hear from the man behind the website.
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Re: Interview with MediaDefender Defenders.com

Postby valiant » Mon Oct 01, 2007 8:54 am

Although MediaDefender and their legal counsel are no doubt taking this breech [sic] very seriously......


Maybe that's what's wrong.......they think they're delivering a baby!

:oops:
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