Feeds

Surge in encrypted torrents blindsides record biz

BPI claims losing is winning in P2P arms race

SANS - Survey on application security programs

Neil Armstrong, products director at BT-owned ISP PlusNet, said: "It isn't possible for us to tell if a customer is downloading a copyright file or not unless we specifically 'snoop' every packet on the customer's line.

"We would obviously only do this where we have a proper request from the relevant legal authority to do so, and even then it is unlikely we would be able to see inside encrypted payloads."

The most popular BitTorrent client, uTorrent, can be configured to use RC4 encryption to obscure torrent streams and header information. Armstrong said that although future DPI gear may be able to grab some header detail, the music or movie itself is likely to remain inaccessible.

So-called content filtering software from Audible Magic cannot peer inside encrypted packets, either.

The rapid acceleration in encryption isn't limited to BitTorrenters. Estimates say torrent traffic accounts for about between 50 and 60 per cent of all file-sharing. Usenet, which the RIAA recently said is a bigger offender than Kazaa-type services, accounts for about another 25 per cent. It's set to see more scrambled files shared over it, too, as providers including Giganews now offer SSL encryption.

Paul Sanders, part of the team of music and ISP veterans behind PlayLouder, the first "Media Service Provider", which will let subscribers share music freely and legally in exchange for a small premium on the monthly broadband bill, sounded the alarm. "I think this trend is absolutely a warning to those people in the music industry who believe they can win this war," he said.

"There's got to be a commercial settlement. Both sides [ISPs and the record industry] are destroying the value in music." Sanders believes the much-debated blanket licence and download services that are "better than free" are one the way out of the arms race with determined freeloaders.

Even if BitTorrent encryption can be defeated somehow, there's another P2P protocol on the horizon. It's being specifically designed to dodge monitoring systems. ®

3 Big data security analytics techniques

More from The Register

next story
Lavabit loses contempt of court appeal over protecting Snowden, customers
Judges rule complaints about government power are too little, too late
Don't let no-hire pact suit witnesses call Steve Jobs a bullyboy, plead Apple and Google
'Irrelevant' character evidence should be excluded – lawyers
Record labels sue Pandora over vintage song royalties
Companies want payout on recordings made before 1972
EFF: Feds plan to put 52 MILLION FACES into recognition database
System would identify faces as part of biometrics collection
Edward Snowden on his Putin TV appearance: 'Why all the criticism?'
Denies Q&A cameo was meant to slam US, big-up Russia
Ex-Tony Blair adviser is new top boss at UK spy-hive GCHQ
Robert Hannigan to replace Sir Iain Lobban in the autumn
Judge halts spread of zombie Nortel patents to Texas in Google trial
Epic Rockstar patent war to be waged in California
German space centre endures cyber attack
Chinese code retrieved but NSA hack not ruled out
APPLE FAILS to ditch class action suit over ebook PRICE-FIX fiasco
Do not pass go, do cough (up to) $840m in damages
Whoever you vote for, Google gets in
Report uncovers giant octopus squid of lobbying influence
prev story

Whitepapers

Mainstay ROI - Does application security pay?
In this whitepaper learn how you and your enterprise might benefit from better software security.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Top three mobile application threats
Learn about three of the top mobile application security threats facing businesses today and recommendations on how to mitigate the 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.