Feeds

Games' copy protection cracked in days, says newsletter

StarForce struts its stuff

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Protecting against web application threats using SSL

Russian copy protection specialist StarForce Technology has stepped into the gap left by the DoJ's repurposing of ISONews. Not, we presume, deliberately, but it's a funny coincidence all the same.

Prior to becoming an antipiracy propaganda site, and indeed prior to getting involved in Xbox mod chips, ISONews produced lists of software that had been cracked, and names of the teams that had produced the cracks. We have no idea why anyone would find such information useful, nor why ISONews did this, but you can always take your pick from one of these.

Granted however that someone, somewhere found this sort of stuff useful, then they'll no doubt be interested in StarForce's new newsletter, Copy Protection Review, which you can sign up for here. Aside from providing news about what's what in the copy protection business, CPR proposes to publish a regular list of cracked copy protection, and how soon after launch it was cracked.

It makes interesting reading. Says StarForce on SafeDisc 2: "Out of six games listed in the table one... stayed uncracked during two days after the official release. The other five were cracked before they even came out." Which is not very good, really. For four games using C-Dilla 2.x the record was three days, and they claim the same for SecuROM, although the way we read the table it looks like one achieved a staggering six days uncracked.

But overall, it's still not very good, is it? You might say that stats like these provided an argument against bothering with copy protection in the first place. Given StarForce's line of business that would be a very silly thing for them to argue. Instead, StarForce is recommending its own systems, StarForce Professional 3.0 for "the ultimate protection of popular games" (which may in itself be a risky thing to say), StarForce Basic Edition (which we think is largely intended to discourage people), and StarForce CD-R 3.0, which is aimed at professional pirates. Er, at stopping professional pirates.

As yet StarForce-protected software does not appear in the company's hall of shame, but as it's now boosting its European presence that will no doubt change. Nevertheless, we wish them the very best, and hope they have a happy CeBIT. And to be fair, the aim does not appear to be to do the impossible and produce an uncrackable system. Says the company: "Usually games publishers use copy protection to keep the maximum sales during the first two-three weeks after release." Which seems about achievable... ®

The next step in data security

More from The Register

next story
New 'Cosmos' browser surfs the net by TXT alone
No data plan? No WiFi? No worries ... except sluggish download speed
'Windows 9' LEAK: Microsoft's playing catchup with Linux
Multiple desktops and live tiles in restored Start button star in new vids
iOS 8 release: WebGL now runs everywhere. Hurrah for 3D graphics!
HTML 5's pretty neat ... when your browser supports it
Mathematica hits the Web
Wolfram embraces the cloud, promies private cloud cut of its number-cruncher
Google extends app refund window to two hours
You now have 120 minutes to finish that game instead of 15
Intel: Hey, enterprises, drop everything and DO HADOOP
Big Data analytics projected to run on more servers than any other app
Mozilla shutters Labs, tells nobody it's been dead for five months
Staffer's blog reveals all as projects languish on GitHub
SUSE Linux owner Attachmate gobbled by Micro Focus for $2.3bn
Merger will lead to mainframe and COBOL powerhouse
iOS 8 Healthkit gets a bug SO Apple KILLS it. That's real healthcare!
Not fit for purpose on day of launch, says Cupertino
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.
Protecting users from Firesheep and other Sidejacking attacks with SSL
Discussing the vulnerabilities inherent in Wi-Fi networks, and how using TLS/SSL for your entire site will assure security.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.