Feeds

Hezbollah sting bust sees first phone-unlock DMCA conviction

Mass terrorist jailbreaking not same as fanboi freedom

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

A Philadelphia federal court has accepted a guilty plea from one Mohamad Majed, who admitted breaching the Digital Millennium Copyright Act in unlocking thousands of phones for resale.

The phones were locked to TracFone, a virtual operator in the US which specialises in pre-paid connections and heavily-subsidised handsets. TracFone has pursued mass unlockers before, but this is the first time anyone has been convicted of breaching the DMCA by unlocking a phone.

The DMCA makes the act of circumventing protection techniques against the law, even if not for commercial gain. That law was clarified earlier this year to exempt subsidised phones that had been used on the subsiding operator's network. Jailbreaking your own phone was declared legal in July this year, despite Apple's objections.

Not that it was unlocked phones that attracted the authorities. Their attention was grabbed by a "suspicious loading of carpets late at night", which was reported by a nearby curtain-twitcher and resulted in a sting operation that exposed a Hezbollah funding operation and led to 16 arrests - that story is at the Philadelphia Inquirer and makes interesting reading.

But almost a year later one of the accused has pled guilty to breaching the DMCA by unlocking phones prior to shipping them abroad. This still isn't grounds to panic in normal circumstances - personal unlocking for use beyond the subsidised period is still exempted - but if you're shipping thousands of handsets abroad with a view to funding a designated terrorist organisation, take heed. ®

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup

More from The Register

next story
Canadian ISP Shaw falls over with 'routing' sickness
How sure are you of cloud computing now?
Don't call it throttling: Ericsson 'priority' tech gives users their own slice of spectrum
Actually it's a nifty trick - at least you'll pay for what you get
Three floats Jolla in Hong Kong: Says Sailfish is '3rd option'
Network throws hat into ring with Linux-powered handsets
Fifteen zero days found in hacker router comp romp
Four routers rooted in SOHOpelessly Broken challenge
New Sprint CEO says he will lower axe on staff – but prices come first
'Very disruptive' new rates to be revealed next week
PwC says US biz lagging in Internet of Things
Grass is greener in Asia, say the sensors
Ofcom sees RISE OF THE MACHINE-to-machine cell comms
Study spots 9% growth in IoT m2m mobile data connections
O2 vs Vodafone: Mobe firms grab for GCHQ, gov.uk security badge
No, the spooks love US best, say rival firms
Ancient pager tech SMS: It works, it's fab, but wow, get a load of that incoming SPAM
Networks' main issue: they don't know how it works, says expert
Trans-Pacific: Google spaffs cash on FAST undersea packet-flinging
One of 6 backers for new 60 Tbps cable to hook US to Japan
prev story

Whitepapers

Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Solving today's distributed Big Data backup challenges
Enable IT efficiency and allow a firm to access and reuse corporate information for competitive advantage, ultimately changing business outcomes.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.