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  1. #1
    Super Sh!t Stirrer SSanf's Avatar
    Join Date
    January 18th, 2005
    Unsuspecting Kazaa users could be downloading more than free music: A new worm has infiltrated the file-sharing service.


    OK, which one of you did it?


    Worm targets Kazaa users

  2. #2
    Join Date
    January 18th, 2005
    Wusn' me but I got a purty gude idea ...

  3. #3
    ABW Veteran Student Heyder's Avatar
    Join Date
    January 18th, 2005
    I'd bet my left *** it's an internal frame job done to make us look bad.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    January 18th, 2005
    I've noticed that unlike Morpheus, and lucky for us, Kazaa seems to have no shortage of enemies outside the ranks of affiliates...

  5. #5
    2005 Linkshare Golden Link Award Winner  ecomcity's Avatar
    Join Date
    January 18th, 2005
    St Clair Shores MI.
    Millions find their PCs' bandwidth and hard disk space siphoned for mysterious but worthy-sounding scientific projects, just because they downloaded the client for a music- and file-swapping program.

    But wait, there's more: The increasingly popular Kazaa file-sharing network will reap fees for allowing a partner to piggyback its dormant software on downloads of Kazaa's client. Within weeks, Kazaa users will see the premiere of ads offering Altnet audio and video content for sale. The selection will appear alongside--but distinguishable from--Kazaa content on the Kazaa Media Desktop, says Kevin Bermeister, chief executive of Brilliant Digital, parent company of Altnet.


    The new offerings will appear in the company of banner ads from online advertising behemoth DoubleClick, with which Kazaa recently cut a deal. And if your PC shares its downtime processing cycles with Altnet, you could be paying for Kazaa Media Desktop services with a chunk of your PC rather than a lump of cash.

    What Kazaa Conceals
    Consumer complaints erupted after the disclosure in April that Kazaa users are unknowingly downloading a "sleeper" program from Altnet, now a business partner of Sharman Networks, which recently acquired Kazaa software and the Web site. Since the bundle began in February, the size of the file-sharing network has grown about 70 percent, according to Redshift Research. That accounts for nearly 37 million downloads of Altnet software, according to Matt Bailey, Redshift president.

    But when Altnet's seeded software is awakened some time in May--the company won't say exactly when--many users may be caught by surprise.

    "Consumers have nothing to fear," says Brilliant Digital's Bermeister. Here's what he says will happen next.

    On the chosen day, the slumbering software will be roused the next time the user connects to the Kazaa network. That activates the controversial software, a program called SecureInstall. It comes attached to Brilliant Digital's B3D projector, which is multimedia banner ad technology that is also automatically downloaded with the Kazaa client, says an Altnet spokesperson. Kazaa will prompt the user to upgrade to a new version of the Kazaa Media Desktop. Then, Brilliant Digital's SecureInstall will launch the download of a program to access the Altnet network. During the Kazaa client update, users will be able to opt out of the Altnet service, the spokesperson says. The company did not say this previously.

    Altnet is actually both a software program and the access point to a parallel peer-to-peer network that runs concurrently with Kazaa. Only the Altnet network will distribute Altnet content; Kazaa uses the FastTrack network to share its files. Altnet is independent of Kazaa and could function even if Kazaa or the FastTrack network is shuttered, Bermeister says.

    At first, Altnet will market video and audio clips. Brilliant is negotiating with music labels and movie studios to market their material as well. The files will be copy-protected in some way, using Microsoft's digital rights management encryption technology. Restrictions could vary with the type of file or its source; a record label may let you copy a file once (onto a portable player, for example), or play it only a certain number of times. By clicking to download Altnet content, you are opting into the Altnet file-sharing portion of the network and its policies, Bermeister says.

    Your PC Could Pay
    In the next phase of Altnet's plan, the possibility of paying for content with bandwidth and CPU cycles comes up.

    A few weeks after Altnet's launch, Brilliant plans to introduce an Altnet "rewards program," enticing customers to swap PC bandwidth and hard drive space for points that can be redeemed by e-merchant partners, Bermeister says. If you agree to let Altnet's partners download to your hard drive multimedia-rich advertisements for later playback, you can earn points redeemable at e-merchants toward purchases.

    The third part of the scheme includes the opportunity to become a participant in the Altnet distributive computing platform. Bermeister says Brilliant Digital will run "distributed computing" applications over the Altnet network, drawing on your PC's processing power when it's idle.

    Bermeister says he hopes to strike deals with companies like United Devices, Entropia, and Parabon, which recruit PC downtime to process data for various projects, some of them charitable and many of them scientific. For example, United Devices participates in the Anthrax Research Project, which is seeking a vaccine for anthrax poisoning. In that project, you download a screensaver and donate your PC's spare resources to participate in a virtual supercomputer that can analyze billions of molecules in a fraction of the time it takes even a standard supercomputer. Whenever your screen saver goes on, your PC goes to work on an anthrax vaccine.

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