Feeds

Elcomsoft not guilty – DoJ retreats from Moscow

Your tax dollars at work

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

SANS - Survey on application security programs

The Russian software company which has found itself on trial in an American court was acquitted on all counts of circumventing the DMCA today.

Elcomsoft's woes began in August last year, when programmer Dmitry Sklyarov was charged under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act's circumvention 1201 clauses (one small part of which is under review by the Librarian of Congress) while visiting Las Vegas for a technical conference. Skylarov was imprisoned for his part in creating an Adobe eBook reader that permitted fair-use of copyright material, and imprisoned pending trial.

Facing a public backlash, Adobe urged prosecutors not to pursue the case, and Sklyarov was freed last December in a deal where he agreed to testify in the case against his employer. The US Department of Justice picked up the reins.

At the trial the prosecution compared Elcomsoft to Enron and tried to implicate Sklyarov with US computer hacker networks. An outraged prosecution attorney asked if Dmity had considered breaking the US law. Sklyarov, who lives and works in Russia, quite reasonably said that at the time he couldn't care less.

During the trial, it emerged that Elcomsoft's clients include US federal law enforcement agencies, and even Adobe itself.

The Judge asked the Jury to consider if the Elcomsoft had intended the eBook reader to be used for copyright violation, and today the Jury agreed that it hadn't.

"Today's jury verdict sends a strong message to federal prosecutors who believe that tool makers should be thrown in jail just because a copyright owner doesn't like the tools they build," said EFF Senior Intellectual Property Attorney Fred von Lohmann.

We'll get ya'! says the Business Software Alliance in its response to the verdict.

"The DMCA has clear criminal penalties that can and should be imposed in cases of direct or attempted theft of software and other digital content ... we would urge prosecutors to continue aggressively pursuing alleged violations of the law," it said in a shameful statement that willfully associates legal fair use with piracy. (Adobe is also a BSA member).

There's a long way to go. The DMCA was recently cited in a case that claimed price lists were trade secrets, and a successful attempt to takedown a parody site. ®

Related Stories

'I'm no hacker', Sklyarov tells US court
Jury scrutinises DMCA in ElcomSoft case
ElcomSoft rubbishes eBook security ahead of Sklyarov case
Deadline nears for DMCA exemptions
FatWallet.com fights back in WalMart DMCA action
Big chem deploys DMCA to takedown parody site

Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction

More from The Register

next story
Parent gabfest Mumsnet hit by SSL bug: My heart bleeds, grins hacker
Natter-board tells middle-class Britain to purée its passwords
Samsung Galaxy S5 fingerprint scanner hacked in just 4 DAYS
Sammy's newbie cooked slower than iPhone, also costs more to build
Obama allows NSA to exploit 0-days: report
If the spooks say they need it, they get it
Web data BLEEDOUT: Users to feel the pain as Heartbleed bug revealed
Vendors and ISPs have work to do updating firmware - if it's possible to fix this
Snowden-inspired crypto-email service Lavaboom launches
German service pays tribute to Lavabit
One year on: diplomatic fail as Chinese APT gangs get back to work
Mandiant says past 12 months shows Beijing won't call off its hackers
Call of Duty 'fragged using OpenSSL's Heartbleed exploit'
So it begins ... or maybe not, says one analyst
NSA denies it knew about and USED Heartbleed encryption flaw for TWO YEARS
Agency forgets it exists to protect communications, not just spy on them
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a defence for mobile apps
In this whitepaper learn the various considerations for defending mobile applications; from the mobile application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies needed to properly assess mobile applications risk.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.